Taxpayers Fund Politicians Spending Spree Lifestyle

Along with taxes paying off the government debt burden, taxpayers fund politicians spending spree lifestyle. No wonder there are so many exposed tax dodgers see my recent article on the recent Panama Papers. UK’s PM’s wife stuck in choice in deciding what clothes to wear hires a fashion advisor with a huge £53K annual salary that is taxpayer funded . “Rosie’s appointment was quietly approved last year and is confirmed on No 10’s register of special advisers, which states that her civil servant’s salary is in Pay Band 1, or up to £52,999 per year” (Shakespeare, 2016). Considering the average UK salary is £26.5K. At the latest count, the Government had 92 special advisers on its books, whose combined wages cost the taxpayer £8.4 million per year.” (Shakespeare, 2016) Since then they have hired yet another special stylist. “Ms Cameron hired another stylist, Isabel Spearman, prior to this current appointment (Reuters)” (Staufenberg, 2016).

Also, in Australia. “Politicians are claiming a taxpayer-funded allowance to pay for their homes – and it’s perfectly legal.” (Peatling, 2016) Politicians can decide how to spend their travel allowance, some which see a need to spend them on second houses in Canberra for one off vacay stays. Maxing out daily taxpayer expenditure allowance, where they could have easily used the funds on a less lavish accommodation and donated the left over money to charitable organizations. “Politicians are entitled to claim $273 a night when they travel to Canberra for Parliament or other business and many keep second residences in close proximity to Parliament House.” (Peatling, 2016) As long as each politician stays within the allowance limits, they would not have to keep up with tax receipts like that of which everyone in society is expected to collect. On the grounds that they would save taxpayer money from hiring a public servant assistant to help them.

Joe Hockey had also been caught using his travel allowance to pay for his house in Canberra. “According to the Australian Financial Review, Hockey and his wife Melissa Babbage bought the home back in March 1997 for just $320,000.” (Fuary-Wagner, 2016) Hockey will now be selling his taxpayer funded home in the expensive suburb Forrest, for triple the amount to what the purchased price was originally. “More recent data from Domain puts the median price for a house in Forrest at $1,850,000.” (Fuary-Wagner, 2016) Hockey also has properties in the ACT and NSW. “Having purchased the Woolwich Road property in 2004 for $3.5 million, the Federation-era residence with five bedrooms is now being leased by property developer Tino Carusi.” (Fuary-Wagner, 2016) Another in Queensland is a farm of which he sold. “Hockey also owns a farm in Queensland, which he put on the market last year [with an] asking price of $1.55 million.” (Fuary-Wagner, 2016)

This is just one example toward the many politicians who are manipulating their expenditure allowance, never mind the helicopter transportation rides. “In news this week it was revealed that Deputy Prime Minister Barnaby Joyce enjoys helicopter rides to a secret favourite destination of his – a remote venue in the middle of nowhere called The Lunatic Hotel.” (Dean, 2016) The Lunatic Hotel land used as a metaphor to describe an imaginary place for politicians to splurge taxpayer money on lavish expenses. “An examination of the register of interests of MPs and senators show 31 MPs and 23 senators have residences in Canberra – largely in the leafy, well heeled suburbs that surround Parliament House such as Kingston, Barton, Griffith and Forrest.” (Peatling, 2016)


Reference List

Staufenberg, J. (2016). Taypayer ‘pays for samantha cameron’s £53,000-a-year fashion adviser’. The Independent. Retrieved [09/04/2016] from <http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/samantha-cameron-special-adviser-fashion-aide-taxpayer-salary-530000-a6974181.html>.

Shakespeare, S. (2016). Model rosie, sam cam’s girl friday paid by taxpayers; ‘special advisor’ being paid £53,000 to organise pm’s wife’s diary and wardrobe. The Daily Mail. Retrieved [09/04/2016] from <http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3527314/Model-Rosie-Sam-Cam-s-Girl-Friday-paid-taxpayers-Special-adviser-paid-53-000-organise-PM-s-wife-s-diary-wardrobe.html>.

Peatling, S. (2016). The federal politicians using taxpayer-funded perks to pay off their mortgage. The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved [09/04/2016] from <http://www.smh.com.au/federal-politics/political-news/the-federal-politicians-using-taxpayerfunded-perks-to-pay-off-their-mortgage-20160407-go0dye.html>.

Fuary-Wagner, I. (2016). Joe hockey’s house in one of canberra’a most expensive suburbs on the market. Domain. Retrieved [09/04/2016] from <http://www.domain.com.au/news/joe-hockeys-house-in-one-of-canberras-most-expensive-suburbs-on-the-market-20160314-gni9wc/>.

Dean, R. (2016). The unlimited perks and attractions of canberra’s ‘lunactic hotel’. The Australian Financial Review Weekend. Retrieved [09/06/2016] from <http://www.afr.com/opinion/columnists/the-unlimited-perks-and-attractions-of-canberras-lunatic-hotel-20160408-go1q2a>.

Featured images supplied from Unsplash.

Copyright © 2016 Zoë-Marie Beesley

Creative Commons License Licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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