Islington North MP Jeremy Corbyn is the country’s lowest expenses claimer
10:46 08 December 2010
ISLINGTON North MP Jeremy Corbyn was the lowest expenses claimer in the country – after putting in for just £8.70 for an ink cartridge.
The veteran Labour stalwart, who describes himself as a “parsimonious MP”, made the claim during the May to August expenses round – the first since expenses rules were overhauled in a bid to stamp out corruption.
The new Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority has just published details of 22,000 claims submitted by around 570 MPs between May 7 and August 31 this year. Seventy-eight MPs submitted no claims during this period – including Labour’s Islington South and Finsbury MP Emily Thornberry.
But of the MPs who did submit expenses, the lowest claimer was Mr Corbyn. He said he would be putting in more claims over the course of the year. He said: “There were no bills I needed to claim for during this three-month period but in the next claim period, my office rent and various office costs will feature.
“I am a parsimonious MP. I think we should claim what we need to run our offices and pay our staff but be careful because it’s obviously public money. In a year, rent for the office Durham Road, Finsbury Park, is about £12,000 to £14,000.”
Ms Thornberry said that during the year, she would be claiming around £15,000 on rent for her office in Barnsbury Street, Islington, around £2,000 for telephone bills, the £7,000 that is allowed for parliamentary expenses such as headed paper, and money for pens and ink cartridges.
She said: “Islington is the eighth poorest borough in Britain so people do come and see their MP and I am more than happy to help them, but that does mean that our funding is always under strain.”
Ms Thornberry added that she would be paying for her own Christmas cards.