Select Committee on Standards and Privileges Seventh Report


The Committee on Standards and Privileges has agreed to the following Report:


1. We have considered a memorandum by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards relating to the complaints by Mrs Jacqui Lait, Member for Beckenham, and Pete Wishart, Member for North Tayside, against Mr Nigel Griffiths, Member for Edinburgh South. The Commissioner's memorandum is appended to this Report.

2. We agree that Mr Griffiths used his constituency office for party political purposes without informing the Fees Office.

3. Mr Griffiths did not explicitly reimburse the Fees Office for the party political use of his constituency office. Mr Griffiths's claims against the Office Costs Allowance were technically defective but we are satisfied that this did not mean he received from public funds more than that to which he was entitled.

4. We agree with the Commissioner that Mr Griffiths ought to have registered the property he used as his constituency office. He has now done so.

5. The Commissioner considered the complaint that Mr Griffiths had misused House of Commons allowances. At the time of the alleged break of the rules by Mr Griffiths there was no rule prohibiting Members from claiming rent from the Office Costs Allowance for property they owned. Mr Griffiths was therefore free to do as he wished with the rental income he received.

6. We recommend that no further action be taken.

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