BASINGSTOKE MP Maria Miller could face a further inquiry into her expenses after a Scottish MP called for the Metropolitan Police to investigate her expense claims further.
As reported on The Gazette website, the Culture Secretary was cleared yesterday, of deliberately submitting expense claims that she was not entitled to for her second home but has been ordered to repay nearly £6,000 to cover the costs of over-claiming mortgage expenses on the second home after she failed to cut her claims as interest rates fell.
An investigation was launched in December 2012 by the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards, into Mrs Miller’s claims of £90,718 during 2005 and 2009, for her second home in Wimbledon where her parents also lived.
The inquiry began after a complaint was made by Labour MP for Bassetlaw, John Mann a day after a newspaper report was published detailing the Basingstoke MP’s expense claims for mortgage interest payments, utilities and council tax.
Mr Mann likened Mrs Miller’s second home claims to those of former Labour minister Tony McNulty, who was ordered to pay back more than £13,000 of expenses claimed for a second home occupied by his parents in 2009.
But despite the recommendation from Parliamentary Commissioner, Kathryn Hudson that Mrs Miller should pay back £44,000 which she estimates is the total sum of the overpayment, 10 MPs and three lay person on the committee on standards ordered the Basingstoke MP to pay back just £5,800.
In a letter to the Metropolitan Police which is published on The Daily Telegraph’s website, the MP for Dunfermline and West Fife, Thomas Docherty said: “Given the widely differing conclusions of the commission and the committee regarding the serious allegations made about Mrs Miller and the fact that both the commission and committee feel that Mrs Miller did not co-operate with the inquiry, I believe this matter warrants further investigation and I believe the Metropolitan Police and the appropriate body to carry out such as investigation.”
The Culture Secretary apologised to MPs in a short statement yesterday, which said: “The report resulted from an allegation made by the member for Bassetlaw. The committee has dismissed his allegation.
“The committee has recommended that I apologise to the House for my attitude to the Commissioner’s inquiries and I, of course, unreservedly apologise. I fully accept the recommendations of the committee and thank them for bringing this matter to an end.”