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Chipping Barnet MP Theresa Villiers declined to claim travel expenses, new figures show
Expenses figures have been released for Barnet’s three constituency MPs.
Chipping Barnet representative Theresa Villiers did not claim any travel expenses in the 2012/13 financial year, the figures issued by parliamentary expenses watchdog IPSA showed.
Finchley and Golders Green MP Mike Freer’s constituency office was among one of the highest spenders in the country.
And although Hendon representative Matthew Offord claimed the highest travel expenses of the three, at £1,500 the figure was still one of the lowest in the country.
The office of Mr Freer spent £22,000 in the 12-month period, ranking 82nd of 658 constituency offices across the country.
In a statement, Mr Freer said: “My office is extremely busy, and the residents of Finchley & Golders Green rightly expect a high level of service from me. I have four members of staff. My office costs are generally in line with other London MPs with similar constituencies.
“I ensure residents in my constituency get the best service possible, and I am always mindful of providing that service at a fair cost to the taxpayer.”
The office of Ms Villiers, who acts as the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland, was among one of the lowest spenders at £9,000.
Her decision not to claim any travel expenses from the taxpayer, she said, was made to save administration time.
In a statement, a representative for the MP said: “Theresa hasn't been claiming travel expenses in recent years, partly to save time on record keeping and administration.
“Over the past 12 months, it has also been the case that the security arrangements which come with her role as Secretary of State for Northern Ireland mean that much of her travel is covered by a Home Office budget for ministers with roles that give rise to particular security risks.
“As regards the rent for her constituency office, Theresa runs a fully staffed constituency office on Barnet High Street open all year round during working hours.
“She has sought to obtain appropriate value for money in relation to her office rent and all arrangements have been externally valued by a local surveyor, consistent with IPSA rules.”
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