Thursday, 7 April 2011

Health journeys

Here’s an interesting bit of information on how the ministerial team at the Department of Health spends taxpayers’ pounds on travel.

It turns out that Simon Burns is the most prolific user of his ministerial car.

According to data released in a parliamentary question asked by Maria Eagle, Burns used his car to travel to his Chelmsford constituency 154 times between May 2010 and March 2011.

Ministers are only permitted to make the journey to their own constituency if they are carrying confidential papers.

Anne Milton meanwhile went to her Guildford constituency in her car 134 times. Paul Burstow used his to go to his Sutton and Cheam constituency just 29. Andrew Lansley went to South Cambridgeshire just 12 times.

I can’t help but wonder why health ministers seem to carry the kind of confidential papers that merit ministerial cars far more often than the Secretary of State.

Anyway, out of the four, Burns also used up more public money for his travel between May 2010 and February 2011 – £41,384 on his car, £653 on trains and £3,603 on air travel. A total £45,640

Anne Milton spent £39,344 on the ministerial car, £1,705 on trains and £336 on air travel – £41,385 in total. Andrew Lansley spent £35,762 on the ministerial car, £1,850 on train costs and £2,610 on air travel. A total of £40,222.

Earl Howe spent £28,069 on his car and £726 on train, £28,795 in total.

Paul Burstow spent just £25,853 on the car and 314 in trains – £26,167 in total.

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