Thursday 18 February 2010

Hoon and Hewitt slammed

Geoff Hoon and Pat Hewitt took a verbal bashing from a member of Labour’s governing body today.

Lobbydog was chatting to the National Executive Committee’s Peter Kenyon who said it would be outrageous if the pair took up their so-called “resettlement grants”.

Hoon stands to walk away with £64,000 and Hewitt, £54,000, under the grant system, which was set up to help MPs “adjust to non-parliamentary life”.

Kenyon said: “I think there is a case for any member of any party that doesn’t have a genuine need, to voluntarily forgo the grant. That seems to be the incontrovertible case.

“For an MP that is stepping down at the next election that already has employment or the means of surviving promptly it would be outrageous for them to claim it, particularly in the light of how the public now sees MPs.

“If it requires intervention to that end from the Parliamentary Standards Authority, then I would whole heartedly support that.”

It’s all the more scandalous of course because neither Hoon, a trained lawyer with a property portfolio, nor Hewitt, who holds board level positions with Boots, BT, Cinven and Barclays Capital, is in a tight spot financially now that they’re leaving the House.

If they had waited till after the election before standing down they would have lost the grant all together as the system under which they are entitled to it will most likely be scrapped.

LD spoke to the pair yesterday, both said they had “not given much thought” as to whether they would take the grant or not.


subrosa said...

'Not much though'? That'll be as much thought as my family give to their stomachs, which is more or less constantly.

Anonymous said...

Id love to be in a position where Id give "not much thought" to over £50,000.

There should be no redundancy money for people who volutarily leave their jobs. There isn't anywhere else. If I decide to pack up tomorrow no one is going to give me a redundancy payment to help me adjust.

The job centre will say that I shold not have given up my job and disallow me benefit.

Talok about one deal for them and one for ordinary people.

How I wish I were as "extraordinary" as they are.

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