Public Representation Monitoring and Standards

The aim of this proposal is to ensure that politicians should be actively in touch with the lives of those they represent. The following are suggestions for making this happen:

(1) Elected politicians should be obliged to use at least one public service in their constituency or ward per year. For example, they should either (a) use public transport (however awful it might be) from, to or within their constituency or ward, (b) use the local hospital (and (i) be made to pay for parking like everyone else, (ii) put up with the same conditions as members of the public – e.g. delays, mixed wards, referrals to distant hospitals), (c) use public toilets, etc, in their own area, (d) visit local schools and see the conditions some teachers, kitchen staff, etc., are having to work under. Their visits should not be preceded by a grand 'clean up' of the school.

(2) Politicians should be rated on the effectiveness of their response to constituency problems, e.g. time taken to respond to constituency letters, constituent satisfaction, etc.

Why is this idea important?

The aim of this proposal is to ensure that politicians should be actively in touch with the lives of those they represent. The following are suggestions for making this happen:

(1) Elected politicians should be obliged to use at least one public service in their constituency or ward per year. For example, they should either (a) use public transport (however awful it might be) from, to or within their constituency or ward, (b) use the local hospital (and (i) be made to pay for parking like everyone else, (ii) put up with the same conditions as members of the public – e.g. delays, mixed wards, referrals to distant hospitals), (c) use public toilets, etc, in their own area, (d) visit local schools and see the conditions some teachers, kitchen staff, etc., are having to work under. Their visits should not be preceded by a grand 'clean up' of the school.

(2) Politicians should be rated on the effectiveness of their response to constituency problems, e.g. time taken to respond to constituency letters, constituent satisfaction, etc.

Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority encourages MP to claim more!

The IPSA, set up in response to the MP excessive claims fiasco, states on its website, that it is:

"..an independent organisation created to bring a fresh approach to the system of paying MP expenses.  The IPSA will keep at the front of its mind its main duty – to serve the interests of  the public"

We have just 650 Members of Parliament. The IPSA  is busy establishing rules and regs designed to curb the excesses of MPs.  Surely those appointed to do this could exercise a little  flexibility, creativity and perhaps just  a dose of common sense if and when it enounters an occasional anomoly: an MP actually wishing to save us taxpayers unnecessary costs.

The case in question:  Nationalist MP for the Western Isles, Angus MacNeal, has appealed to the IPSA to allow him to continue to claim the sum of  £252 per month on his 2 bed London flat.  But, no, the IPSA has told him he cannot continue to submit this claim and must, effectively, claim up to £1,450 a month for a one bed flat and rent his existing flat out!

I don't doubt that the changes implemented by the IPSA are resulting in savings overall, but Mr. MacNeal, who has saved the taxpayer some £37,000 over the last 4 years, is now required to incur unnecessary expenses.    No doubt the IPSA will say in their defence that with any change there will be a handful of cases where people have to claim more.  What I would like to ask is, why is the IPSA is so unable to make sensible exceptions, clearly in line with its remit, and employ a little intelligence, discretion and judgement in the face of this sort of case.  Are the systems so incapable of a little flexibility in their application and if not, why not?

 

Why is this idea important?

The IPSA, set up in response to the MP excessive claims fiasco, states on its website, that it is:

"..an independent organisation created to bring a fresh approach to the system of paying MP expenses.  The IPSA will keep at the front of its mind its main duty – to serve the interests of  the public"

We have just 650 Members of Parliament. The IPSA  is busy establishing rules and regs designed to curb the excesses of MPs.  Surely those appointed to do this could exercise a little  flexibility, creativity and perhaps just  a dose of common sense if and when it enounters an occasional anomoly: an MP actually wishing to save us taxpayers unnecessary costs.

The case in question:  Nationalist MP for the Western Isles, Angus MacNeal, has appealed to the IPSA to allow him to continue to claim the sum of  £252 per month on his 2 bed London flat.  But, no, the IPSA has told him he cannot continue to submit this claim and must, effectively, claim up to £1,450 a month for a one bed flat and rent his existing flat out!

I don't doubt that the changes implemented by the IPSA are resulting in savings overall, but Mr. MacNeal, who has saved the taxpayer some £37,000 over the last 4 years, is now required to incur unnecessary expenses.    No doubt the IPSA will say in their defence that with any change there will be a handful of cases where people have to claim more.  What I would like to ask is, why is the IPSA is so unable to make sensible exceptions, clearly in line with its remit, and employ a little intelligence, discretion and judgement in the face of this sort of case.  Are the systems so incapable of a little flexibility in their application and if not, why not?

 

MP Sponsorship and Corporate Logos

Most of our larger companies, and a lot of smaller ones too, spend a great deal of money ensuring that they have a friendly voice in Parliament looking out for their interests.

However, it is clear that the sponsorship of MPs is currently not gaining these companies the publicity they deserve,.

I suggest that MP's wear the logos of the companies that pay them just like Formula 1 drivers do.

Why is this idea important?

Most of our larger companies, and a lot of smaller ones too, spend a great deal of money ensuring that they have a friendly voice in Parliament looking out for their interests.

However, it is clear that the sponsorship of MPs is currently not gaining these companies the publicity they deserve,.

I suggest that MP's wear the logos of the companies that pay them just like Formula 1 drivers do.

The PM and should lead by example

It has always amazed me why we need so many MPs we have more MPs than the USA has senators. Why does city need more than one MP?

Make the first cuts to the public sector by cutting MPs. He says they will cut 50 MPs we have yet to see this. Also I feel MPs should be cut by at least 50%

Why is this idea important?

It has always amazed me why we need so many MPs we have more MPs than the USA has senators. Why does city need more than one MP?

Make the first cuts to the public sector by cutting MPs. He says they will cut 50 MPs we have yet to see this. Also I feel MPs should be cut by at least 50%

MP’s should have to do the same as the rest of us

Reading through some idas on this site I've found two areas where MP's are treated differently to the rest of us.

1.  MP's don't have to have CRB checks even if their work brings them in contact with children.

2. MP's can choose to smoke inside Westminster licensed bars because of its 'palace' designation.

Are there any more examples of the civil liberties of MP's being more respected than the civil liberties of the rest of the population and where they are deemed above the law.

I think if we have to do it MP's have to do it too.

 

Why is this idea important?

Reading through some idas on this site I've found two areas where MP's are treated differently to the rest of us.

1.  MP's don't have to have CRB checks even if their work brings them in contact with children.

2. MP's can choose to smoke inside Westminster licensed bars because of its 'palace' designation.

Are there any more examples of the civil liberties of MP's being more respected than the civil liberties of the rest of the population and where they are deemed above the law.

I think if we have to do it MP's have to do it too.

 

Request for the government to respect our right to debate and take heed.

LoLopants I hope you read this as I first want to apologise for stealing your title.  However, I did so deliberately to get your attention when I was a bit miffed that I was unable to give your IDEA 5 stars as the moderators have cut you off after only a couple of responses because, they say, what you have written is not an idea but a general comment (or words to that effect).

So I would like to state my IDEA which is that I think elected government officials should no longer ask for IDEAS  and then go on the public record (Nick Cleggs' video undertaking blatently obvious damage control re:  an overwhelming majority wanting at least debate on the smoking ban) saying that some IDEAS will never be considered.  Never is a very long time in politics.

So, just in case the moderators are unsure here what an IDEA is, I will bullet point the main IDEA put forward by myself and originally by username LoLopants.

  • IDEA 1…. From now on in a British democracy no IDEA should be deemed unsuitable for discussion and debate among its adult voting populace. Freedom of speech in other words.

 

  • IDEA. 2…From now on no MP should laughingly deny their responsibility to listen to the ideas of the people who elected him//her, even if those IDEAS may make them nervous because they are scared of doing anything about them. 

Hope that covers what you meant to be considered and commented upon LoLo, and 5 ***** for your great comments and IDEAS.

 

 

Why is this idea important?

LoLopants I hope you read this as I first want to apologise for stealing your title.  However, I did so deliberately to get your attention when I was a bit miffed that I was unable to give your IDEA 5 stars as the moderators have cut you off after only a couple of responses because, they say, what you have written is not an idea but a general comment (or words to that effect).

So I would like to state my IDEA which is that I think elected government officials should no longer ask for IDEAS  and then go on the public record (Nick Cleggs' video undertaking blatently obvious damage control re:  an overwhelming majority wanting at least debate on the smoking ban) saying that some IDEAS will never be considered.  Never is a very long time in politics.

So, just in case the moderators are unsure here what an IDEA is, I will bullet point the main IDEA put forward by myself and originally by username LoLopants.

  • IDEA 1…. From now on in a British democracy no IDEA should be deemed unsuitable for discussion and debate among its adult voting populace. Freedom of speech in other words.

 

  • IDEA. 2…From now on no MP should laughingly deny their responsibility to listen to the ideas of the people who elected him//her, even if those IDEAS may make them nervous because they are scared of doing anything about them. 

Hope that covers what you meant to be considered and commented upon LoLo, and 5 ***** for your great comments and IDEAS.

 

 

All official answers must be committal not noncommittal

This applies to every answer given by a government minister or office, civil servant, MP, councillor etc, other public office or commission of any nature, or business answering an enquiry about problems with its product, inclduing lawyers.

Everything stated in every answer given in an official capacity, i.e. as part of these folks' jobs, must be definite about all facts involved. if total factual certainty does not exist, the extent to which it does must be stated definitely. The words "unfortuately", "regrettably", and all synonyms used similarly, should be banned. Phrases like "you feel" or "you consider", that take the committal factuality out of a sentence, should be banned, and provision made for any new such phrase that bureaucrats are seen to coin and use, to be banned too upon its existence being demonstrated.

If the recipient of the answer perceives that any statement in it is noncommittal, s/he will be entitled to write back stating and explaining how that is, and to demand, as an enforceable right, a reply where the writer of the statement has to show, word by word, that it is watertightly committal and definite.

Why is this idea important?

This applies to every answer given by a government minister or office, civil servant, MP, councillor etc, other public office or commission of any nature, or business answering an enquiry about problems with its product, inclduing lawyers.

Everything stated in every answer given in an official capacity, i.e. as part of these folks' jobs, must be definite about all facts involved. if total factual certainty does not exist, the extent to which it does must be stated definitely. The words "unfortuately", "regrettably", and all synonyms used similarly, should be banned. Phrases like "you feel" or "you consider", that take the committal factuality out of a sentence, should be banned, and provision made for any new such phrase that bureaucrats are seen to coin and use, to be banned too upon its existence being demonstrated.

If the recipient of the answer perceives that any statement in it is noncommittal, s/he will be entitled to write back stating and explaining how that is, and to demand, as an enforceable right, a reply where the writer of the statement has to show, word by word, that it is watertightly committal and definite.

Set the Wilson Doctrine in law

The Wilson Doctrine, which each Prime Minister re-affirms on entering office, guarantees that constituents' communication with their elected representatives (MPs, MEPs, Mayors, Welsh/Scottish/Northern Ireland members) will not be snooped on by the intelligence services or the Police.

Why is this idea important?

The Wilson Doctrine, which each Prime Minister re-affirms on entering office, guarantees that constituents' communication with their elected representatives (MPs, MEPs, Mayors, Welsh/Scottish/Northern Ireland members) will not be snooped on by the intelligence services or the Police.

The only idea you need: make all laws apply to MPs

Dear Mr Clegg

I think it's great that you've set up this website. It shows that you are committed to real engagement in the democratic process, which is an excellent thing.

However, you must be wondering now how you are going to sort through all the ideas here. There are thousands of ideas, and although doubtless many of the dafter ones can be ruled out pretty quickly, many of the other suggestions are actually pretty good, so it must be very hard to know where to start.

Let me help you. I would like to suggest just one law that you could introduce to help businesses emerge from the shackles of red tape. This is not to say that the other ideas aren't good: many of them are excellent, but all the good ideas will emerge naturally over the course of this parliament if you implement my idea first.

My idea is simple: make sure that every single business regulation applies to MPs and ministers in their own offices and departments, only more so. MPs are probably exempt from a lot of laws at the moment, and even if they're not technically exempt, someone at a high level has clearly taken a decision not to enforce them. For example, I can't take on an unpaid intern in my business, as I would be breaking minimum wage legislation, yet if you look on the w4mp.org website, you'll see many MPs advertising for unpaid interns. That kind of double standard has to stop.

But it needs to go further than that. The laws that apply to the rest of us need to apply much more vigorously to MPs. You need to set up an independent enforcement body (perhaps headed by a senior police officer), with the job of proactively looking for any breaches of any business regulation whatsoever among MPs and ministers. For example, I am required to update my health and safety policy annually. I actually do that, because I'm a good boy, but if I didn't, I'd probably get away with it unless there were some accident at my company that got investigated. However, with my idea, inspectors would regularly inspect the health and safety policy in every MPs office. If it's 366 days since it was last updated, then the MP is prosecuted. No ifs, no buts. You could imagine something pretty similar for every other bit of business regulation.

And if MPs are prosecuted, penalties would have to be more serious. Any fines levied could be at 5 times the level that would be applied to a business caught for the same offence (and no claiming the fines on expenses!), and if they do anything serious enough to merit a custodial sentence, then you'd lock them up for longer than you would a member of the public. Needless to say, ministers would be personally liable for any breaches of the law in their own departments.

And it goes without saying that MPs would have to fill in a P11D for all their expenses, which would be gone over in minute detail by some of the meanest inspectors that HMRC has to offer (and trust me, they are not lacking in such people).

Once that regime is in place, I think you'd find that parliament would pretty quickly vote for most of the other good ideas suggested on this site, without your having to do anything specific to encourage it.

Why is this idea important?

Dear Mr Clegg

I think it's great that you've set up this website. It shows that you are committed to real engagement in the democratic process, which is an excellent thing.

However, you must be wondering now how you are going to sort through all the ideas here. There are thousands of ideas, and although doubtless many of the dafter ones can be ruled out pretty quickly, many of the other suggestions are actually pretty good, so it must be very hard to know where to start.

Let me help you. I would like to suggest just one law that you could introduce to help businesses emerge from the shackles of red tape. This is not to say that the other ideas aren't good: many of them are excellent, but all the good ideas will emerge naturally over the course of this parliament if you implement my idea first.

My idea is simple: make sure that every single business regulation applies to MPs and ministers in their own offices and departments, only more so. MPs are probably exempt from a lot of laws at the moment, and even if they're not technically exempt, someone at a high level has clearly taken a decision not to enforce them. For example, I can't take on an unpaid intern in my business, as I would be breaking minimum wage legislation, yet if you look on the w4mp.org website, you'll see many MPs advertising for unpaid interns. That kind of double standard has to stop.

But it needs to go further than that. The laws that apply to the rest of us need to apply much more vigorously to MPs. You need to set up an independent enforcement body (perhaps headed by a senior police officer), with the job of proactively looking for any breaches of any business regulation whatsoever among MPs and ministers. For example, I am required to update my health and safety policy annually. I actually do that, because I'm a good boy, but if I didn't, I'd probably get away with it unless there were some accident at my company that got investigated. However, with my idea, inspectors would regularly inspect the health and safety policy in every MPs office. If it's 366 days since it was last updated, then the MP is prosecuted. No ifs, no buts. You could imagine something pretty similar for every other bit of business regulation.

And if MPs are prosecuted, penalties would have to be more serious. Any fines levied could be at 5 times the level that would be applied to a business caught for the same offence (and no claiming the fines on expenses!), and if they do anything serious enough to merit a custodial sentence, then you'd lock them up for longer than you would a member of the public. Needless to say, ministers would be personally liable for any breaches of the law in their own departments.

And it goes without saying that MPs would have to fill in a P11D for all their expenses, which would be gone over in minute detail by some of the meanest inspectors that HMRC has to offer (and trust me, they are not lacking in such people).

Once that regime is in place, I think you'd find that parliament would pretty quickly vote for most of the other good ideas suggested on this site, without your having to do anything specific to encourage it.

AV must not be adopted; axe the Whips instead.

I have to admit I'm bending the rules here a bit: no legislation has been passed yet to bring forward a referendum on changing the electoral system to AV, but I would be in favour of its repeal should it be passed.

In theory, constituent democracy works on the premise that constituents choose a candidate, not a party.  As such, the constituents have the greatest pull over the candidates and MPs.  Greater, that is, than the parties.  For, if local parties select their candidates and local constituents select their MPs, then the MPs owe their jobs and their power to their constituents.  MPs know that they will lose their jobs at the next election if they don't do what their constituents wish.

Unfortunately, the practice is somewhat different.  Any MP who harbours any ambitions of a miniserial portfolio or even a seat on a Select Committee must do as the Whips say, even if their constituents wouldn't want the MP to do so.  And how few people go into politics to spend their entire career on the back benches?

There is a simple solution to this: ensure that Whips can only force MPs to vote in a given way on manifesto commitments.  MPs would then vote with their consciences on all other legislation; which is, after all, what their constituents elected them to do.  The game of Tug-'o-War between their conscience and their ambition would be over. 

However, the proposed legislation also stipulates a fixed term five year parliament.  This would merely entrench unpopular and failing administrations in power; who wouldn't have wished Brown's failed administration out much sooner than it held on until?  If the Whips had no power over MPs for non-manifesto commitments, MPs would feel more able to throw out an unpopular administration, even if it was their own party. 

We have the system, one of the best electoral systems in the world, but it is being abused by power-hungry party-leaders and Governments.  We must first try fix the system and only replace if we cannot.

In order to reinforce all MPs' sense of duty towards their constituents, there is one change we could make without altering the system irrevocably.  We could introduce powers of recall, whereby a petition signed by a proportion of electors in a constituency could force a by-election.  This would focus the minds of MPs on their constituents' wishes.

Axe the Whips, not the electors's power.

Why is this idea important?

I have to admit I'm bending the rules here a bit: no legislation has been passed yet to bring forward a referendum on changing the electoral system to AV, but I would be in favour of its repeal should it be passed.

In theory, constituent democracy works on the premise that constituents choose a candidate, not a party.  As such, the constituents have the greatest pull over the candidates and MPs.  Greater, that is, than the parties.  For, if local parties select their candidates and local constituents select their MPs, then the MPs owe their jobs and their power to their constituents.  MPs know that they will lose their jobs at the next election if they don't do what their constituents wish.

Unfortunately, the practice is somewhat different.  Any MP who harbours any ambitions of a miniserial portfolio or even a seat on a Select Committee must do as the Whips say, even if their constituents wouldn't want the MP to do so.  And how few people go into politics to spend their entire career on the back benches?

There is a simple solution to this: ensure that Whips can only force MPs to vote in a given way on manifesto commitments.  MPs would then vote with their consciences on all other legislation; which is, after all, what their constituents elected them to do.  The game of Tug-'o-War between their conscience and their ambition would be over. 

However, the proposed legislation also stipulates a fixed term five year parliament.  This would merely entrench unpopular and failing administrations in power; who wouldn't have wished Brown's failed administration out much sooner than it held on until?  If the Whips had no power over MPs for non-manifesto commitments, MPs would feel more able to throw out an unpopular administration, even if it was their own party. 

We have the system, one of the best electoral systems in the world, but it is being abused by power-hungry party-leaders and Governments.  We must first try fix the system and only replace if we cannot.

In order to reinforce all MPs' sense of duty towards their constituents, there is one change we could make without altering the system irrevocably.  We could introduce powers of recall, whereby a petition signed by a proportion of electors in a constituency could force a by-election.  This would focus the minds of MPs on their constituents' wishes.

Axe the Whips, not the electors's power.

Scrap MPs rights to claim for food allowance mainly shopping

everyone in the United Kingdom has to shop to survive but get no extra help to pay for their weekly shop. MPs are allowed to claim for the monthly or weekly shop, however if I work away from home i have to use the Money for our monthly shop and budget accordingly with my partner as i am not at home. Surely people in a position such as MPs are able to do basic budgeting for family food etc. Another area is that of transportation cost, I travekl to work at a cost of £200:00 per year on a train for 1 1/2 hrs per day as an example but can not claim this money back. If a person takes a job thenm they know the issues and costs before taking it. This is a normal working expenditure for over 90% of the UK population it should be treated the same for MPs.

Why is this idea important?

everyone in the United Kingdom has to shop to survive but get no extra help to pay for their weekly shop. MPs are allowed to claim for the monthly or weekly shop, however if I work away from home i have to use the Money for our monthly shop and budget accordingly with my partner as i am not at home. Surely people in a position such as MPs are able to do basic budgeting for family food etc. Another area is that of transportation cost, I travekl to work at a cost of £200:00 per year on a train for 1 1/2 hrs per day as an example but can not claim this money back. If a person takes a job thenm they know the issues and costs before taking it. This is a normal working expenditure for over 90% of the UK population it should be treated the same for MPs.

Separate the executive from the legislature

Currently, the Cabinet sits in Parliament. This means that they can vote on what the laws are, and then put them into force, a gross violation of the separation of powers principle. The executive seems to dominate Parliament, and forces through laws we don't want, and appoints people only one constituency (if that) chose.

 

I am not proposing that the Prime Minister shouldn't come from the House of Commons. He can stay. But the rest, the ones that form his Cabinet – they should not be MPs or Peers.

 

Instead, we could emulate the American system. The Prime Minister would nominate someone to take up a role in Cabinet. Then that person should be vetted and approved by Parliament. The vetting would be a thorough Q&A session (or plural)  to assess the nominee's ability to do the job. Then a vote would be taken, and if the vote was lost, then the Prime Minister would have to find someone else to nominate.

Why is this idea important?

Currently, the Cabinet sits in Parliament. This means that they can vote on what the laws are, and then put them into force, a gross violation of the separation of powers principle. The executive seems to dominate Parliament, and forces through laws we don't want, and appoints people only one constituency (if that) chose.

 

I am not proposing that the Prime Minister shouldn't come from the House of Commons. He can stay. But the rest, the ones that form his Cabinet – they should not be MPs or Peers.

 

Instead, we could emulate the American system. The Prime Minister would nominate someone to take up a role in Cabinet. Then that person should be vetted and approved by Parliament. The vetting would be a thorough Q&A session (or plural)  to assess the nominee's ability to do the job. Then a vote would be taken, and if the vote was lost, then the Prime Minister would have to find someone else to nominate.

Get a more representitive House of Commons

There are efforts to get more women, ethnic minority and disabled MPs. All of these things are beyond the control of the person involved. i.e. you do not choose your gender, ethnicity or physical ability. So why is there no push to get more people from disadvantaged backgrounds?

Why is this idea important?

There are efforts to get more women, ethnic minority and disabled MPs. All of these things are beyond the control of the person involved. i.e. you do not choose your gender, ethnicity or physical ability. So why is there no push to get more people from disadvantaged backgrounds?

Prospective MPs have to live in the constituency for 5 years

Prospective MPs have to live in the constituency for 5 years before they can be selected as a prospective MP, though I suspect no political party would entertain this idea 🙁

Why is this idea important?

Prospective MPs have to live in the constituency for 5 years before they can be selected as a prospective MP, though I suspect no political party would entertain this idea 🙁

Remove MP’s right to have other jobs

If an individual doesn't think that being an MP is important enough to give it his or her full attention then they should step aside in favour of someone who does.

MP's should also be required to attend all debates because they cannot make an informed decision about any arguments before Parliament unless they have actually heard the arguments.

Abstention should not be allowed.  Deciding our laws is what MP's are paid by the people to do so they should do it one way or the other.

Party alignment should be a collection of like minded individual representatives of their electors but all MP's should be free to vote with their conscience rather than with their party and all whips should be removed.

Why is this idea important?

If an individual doesn't think that being an MP is important enough to give it his or her full attention then they should step aside in favour of someone who does.

MP's should also be required to attend all debates because they cannot make an informed decision about any arguments before Parliament unless they have actually heard the arguments.

Abstention should not be allowed.  Deciding our laws is what MP's are paid by the people to do so they should do it one way or the other.

Party alignment should be a collection of like minded individual representatives of their electors but all MP's should be free to vote with their conscience rather than with their party and all whips should be removed.

MPS’ salaries, expenses & the IPSA

Apparently the new IPSA  (MPs' expenses regulatory body) is costing a lot of money and MPs may not pass its budget. See this article on the IPSA in yesterday's Guardian: http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2010/jul/01/mps-ipsa-expenses-watchdog-budget

Is it too simple for the IPSA to be staffed by genuine members of the public on moderate salaries rather than the usual "people like us"?

I think MPs should be paid the average salary and should be prohibited from having outside jobs – or, after leaving office, from walking straight into jobs closely connected to their previous responsibilities.

Why is this idea important?

Apparently the new IPSA  (MPs' expenses regulatory body) is costing a lot of money and MPs may not pass its budget. See this article on the IPSA in yesterday's Guardian: http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2010/jul/01/mps-ipsa-expenses-watchdog-budget

Is it too simple for the IPSA to be staffed by genuine members of the public on moderate salaries rather than the usual "people like us"?

I think MPs should be paid the average salary and should be prohibited from having outside jobs – or, after leaving office, from walking straight into jobs closely connected to their previous responsibilities.

Remove MPs exemptions from regulations

Repeal all laws and regulations which entitle MPs to exemption from laws which they have imposed on the rest of the population.

Exemptions and privileges affect many areas and were, of course, at the heart of and well illustrated by, the recent expenses scandal. 

Why is this idea important?

Repeal all laws and regulations which entitle MPs to exemption from laws which they have imposed on the rest of the population.

Exemptions and privileges affect many areas and were, of course, at the heart of and well illustrated by, the recent expenses scandal. 

MPs Second Jobs

Being an MP should be a full time job.  However, a great number of our MPs feel the need to hold a vast range of additional positions, directorships and consultancies.

I think if an MP wants a second job it should be chosen for him or her by their constituents. The MP may prefer to be a non-executive director of an arms company on £250K per annum but their constituents may consider that more insight into how they live could be offered by working in a care home for the elderly on minimum wage, emptying their bins or dealing with the aftermath of road traffic accidents.

Let the people decide.

Why is this idea important?

Being an MP should be a full time job.  However, a great number of our MPs feel the need to hold a vast range of additional positions, directorships and consultancies.

I think if an MP wants a second job it should be chosen for him or her by their constituents. The MP may prefer to be a non-executive director of an arms company on £250K per annum but their constituents may consider that more insight into how they live could be offered by working in a care home for the elderly on minimum wage, emptying their bins or dealing with the aftermath of road traffic accidents.

Let the people decide.

Fraudulent MPs should face the same penalities as anyone else

MPs claimed hundred's and multiple thousands of pounds which they were not entitled to in expenses which comes out of the public purse, and only 4 are facing any legal penalties. If a benefit clamiant gets overpaid by mistake or makes a fraudulent claim they are arrested and punished with the full force of the law. What is the difference between the two, one has privilige and high wages the other is on the verge of poverty. Mps did it out greed and the poor from need.

In my opinion they should be treated equally if its ok for MPs then it should be ok for others and if others get the full force of the law upon them then the same applies to MPs. Its called fairness the catch word of this coalition so lets see it action.

Why is this idea important?

MPs claimed hundred's and multiple thousands of pounds which they were not entitled to in expenses which comes out of the public purse, and only 4 are facing any legal penalties. If a benefit clamiant gets overpaid by mistake or makes a fraudulent claim they are arrested and punished with the full force of the law. What is the difference between the two, one has privilige and high wages the other is on the verge of poverty. Mps did it out greed and the poor from need.

In my opinion they should be treated equally if its ok for MPs then it should be ok for others and if others get the full force of the law upon them then the same applies to MPs. Its called fairness the catch word of this coalition so lets see it action.

Force MPs second property to be an average council property in their constituancy

Force them to have their 1st home at their parliment and the second is always a provided council property of average size in the median crime area of their consituency.

Why is this idea important?

Force them to have their 1st home at their parliment and the second is always a provided council property of average size in the median crime area of their consituency.

Make MPs more accountable by law

MPs should be bound by the same rules on expense claims that other public servants adhere to. They should be disqualified from their position and in the worst cases prosecuted for defrauding the public purse if claiming unnecessary expenses. This should extend to second home allowances being 'flipped' from one property to another and should be made retrospective, after all if pension contracts are no longer sacrosanct thus retrospectively altering the expectations that determined joining a scheme why should MPs be excluded from action taken against them?

MPs election pledges should be legally enshrined as forming a contract  with the electorate thus limiting their options for presenting themselves in one way when electioneering and then in another way in their conduct and voting in the House of Commons. Only in this way will they regain the confidence in them that has been lost.

MPs should also have to sign a contract with the electrorate stating that they will uphold their office with integrity and that they acknowledge that they are primarily entrusted with raising taxes to provide in return essential public services (ie providing healthcare and emergency services, protecting the public from criminals, educating the population to reflect that we can only compete as a knowledge economy as the Far East can more cheaply produce goods). These are government responsibilities and should not be devolved to charities or private sector without a referendum and also (if approved) without a corresponding fall in taxation – these being the services that ostensibly forms the contract for taking money in taxation from the public. 

Any additional revenue raised above the amount allocated to public services should be subject to referendum on what use it is put. This would prevent MPs earmarking public funds for their own pet projects that do not relate to the people from whom they have taken the money in tax, i.e. overseas aid.

Why is this idea important?

MPs should be bound by the same rules on expense claims that other public servants adhere to. They should be disqualified from their position and in the worst cases prosecuted for defrauding the public purse if claiming unnecessary expenses. This should extend to second home allowances being 'flipped' from one property to another and should be made retrospective, after all if pension contracts are no longer sacrosanct thus retrospectively altering the expectations that determined joining a scheme why should MPs be excluded from action taken against them?

MPs election pledges should be legally enshrined as forming a contract  with the electorate thus limiting their options for presenting themselves in one way when electioneering and then in another way in their conduct and voting in the House of Commons. Only in this way will they regain the confidence in them that has been lost.

MPs should also have to sign a contract with the electrorate stating that they will uphold their office with integrity and that they acknowledge that they are primarily entrusted with raising taxes to provide in return essential public services (ie providing healthcare and emergency services, protecting the public from criminals, educating the population to reflect that we can only compete as a knowledge economy as the Far East can more cheaply produce goods). These are government responsibilities and should not be devolved to charities or private sector without a referendum and also (if approved) without a corresponding fall in taxation – these being the services that ostensibly forms the contract for taking money in taxation from the public. 

Any additional revenue raised above the amount allocated to public services should be subject to referendum on what use it is put. This would prevent MPs earmarking public funds for their own pet projects that do not relate to the people from whom they have taken the money in tax, i.e. overseas aid.

MP expenses

MPs appoint their wives as their assistant and pay them above average pay. The consultation process concluded that the appointment of family members should stop. But this was rejected by MPs. I say that it was MPs who rejected this is because the head of department appointed MPs took this decision. It is also known that MPs or Politician always retain people who listen to them. Simple example of this is  Army chief asked leave with Conservatives coming into Power and similar shuffles in Education Department. The politicians have habit of cherry picking something which is good for themselves and not the country.

If you really wish to set record correct, I suggest is to put in a law that MPs should not appoint their family members as assistant.  

Why is this idea important?

MPs appoint their wives as their assistant and pay them above average pay. The consultation process concluded that the appointment of family members should stop. But this was rejected by MPs. I say that it was MPs who rejected this is because the head of department appointed MPs took this decision. It is also known that MPs or Politician always retain people who listen to them. Simple example of this is  Army chief asked leave with Conservatives coming into Power and similar shuffles in Education Department. The politicians have habit of cherry picking something which is good for themselves and not the country.

If you really wish to set record correct, I suggest is to put in a law that MPs should not appoint their family members as assistant.