Thursday, 10 February 2011

MP's Expenses Fiasco

Many lifetimes ago I ran the accounting function for a company. It was part of a much larger group and had subsidiaries in 10 European countries, reported to the USA and was ultimately Canadian. I had 18 staff, and dealing with employees expense claims was part of the remit of the department.

One full time clerk, numerate and literate but not professionally qualified, dealt with processing expense claims. The cashier arranged payment of them once approved, just one part of her job.

I dealt with any queries - things that seemed excessive, odd, unsupported, or outside of the rulebook.

We had expense claims from sales teams, directors, auditors, engineers, van drivers, a whole variety of people and circumstances.

We had the occasional argument, usually with the Sales Director about throwing out his salesmens' claims, but at the end of the day I could always win the argument by reference to the Inland Revenue's rules on wholly, entirely, and necessarily incurred whilst doing the job. Of course, there was also a lot of backing from the Company Rule Book and the general fear of the Internal Audit Gestapo and the External Auditors.

I find the costs of running the IPSA set up quite baffling. I'm pretty sure I could do it for rather less....

The Penguin


Disenfranchised of Buckingham said...

The IPSA is worth the money. It demonstrates to MPs how badly things are run by the public sector.

The more they make MPs suffer the better.

In fact give the boss a bonus.

Dave said...

It seems to be an immutable law of the public sector that everything must be very expensive. Have a look at an "N.H.S. Supplies" catalogue if you get chance. Ignore the medical stuff but look at the price of items such as furniture, something that we all have some knowledge/experience of.