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Baldry tops our MPs’ list of outside earners
INTERNATIONAL charity trips, free golf club membership and Champagne are all within Oxfordshire MPs’ published financial interests.
The House of Commons updates the records, which detail MPs’ monthly outside earnings.
Previously, they only had to name their outside employers and directorships in the Register of Members’ Interests, and give an indication of how much they were paid if the work was related to their job as an MP.
But after the expenses scandal they must now reveal how much they earn from other jobs, how many hours they worked, and who paid them, even if the work does not relate to their political role.
Nicola Blackwood, for Oxford West and Abingdon, declared donations from the USA Department of State totalling £4,271, comprising £860.99 for international flights, £1,398.26 for accommodation and £1,268.48 for meals, internal travel and other expenses during an International Visitor Leadership Program trip in May.
She said: “The visit provided a valuable insight into key aspects of US policy, particularly on the issues of child protection/trafficking, which have been recently highlighted through the investigations in Oxford into child sexual exploitation.”
She also declared a donation of £2,239.89 from Save the Children, which paid for a visit to Juba, South Sudan, to see the charity’s programmes on food security and nutrition, and maternal and child health.
John Howell , member for Henley, received six Champagne flutes and a bottle of Champagne, value at £180, from the Oxford Joint Planning Law Conference following a speech at the conference in September 2011, and a lunch worth £96, after a speech for PR firm Curtin & Co.
He added: “I received two payments totalling £105 for playing the organ at St Lawrence Church, Warborough, on April, 26, 2012 and May 4, 2012.”
Prime Minister and Witney MP David Cameron has to date declared honorary membership of the Ellesborough Golf Club, to the value of £1,170 a year, and discounted personal training sessions to the value of £4,475.
But he adds: “I have made a personal donation to a charity of my trainer’s choice.” He also declares rent from property in London.
Banbury MP Sir Tony Baldry has, to date, recorded the most financial interests. He states 10 payments of £3,333 each for attending meetings and advising on business opportunities in his role as deputy chairman of Woburn Energy Plc, in London.
He received directors’ fees of £30,000 from Taha & Partners Ltd, an investment and business development company in Iraq, and HCFI Limited, a publicly quoted company in Egypt, alongside his work as a practising barrister, arbitrator and mediator.
He also declares his role as an executive partner in Diamond Film Partnership, a UK partnership promoting UK film and television production rights, payments to employ a £700-a-month research assistant for work with the Associate All-Party Lighting Group, and overseas visits paid for by the Shaheed Nanak Singh Foundation to India.
Mr Baldry said: “With the exception of the eight years in which I was a Government minister, I have throughout my years in Parliament continued to practise at the Bar and be a company director.
“At the last General Election, I made it clear in my election address that, if re-elected, I intended to continue to practise as a barrister and act as a company director.”
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