MPs asked to repay driving fines claimed on expenses

MPs asked to repay driving fines claimed on expenses

Four MPs are being asked to repay hundreds of pounds in driving fines which they claimed on expenses.

Government minister Amanda Solloway claimed an £80 fixed penalty notice issued by Transport for London in 2020.

Tory MPs Simon Hoare and Bim Afolami, and SNP MP Dave Doogan, also put through similar claims.

MPs are not allowed to claim for fines and some were wrongfully paid out, but at least one MP is understood to have already paid back the money.

Ms Solloway, Derby North MP and energy minister, claimed back a fixed penalty notice which was issued on 2 July 2020, according to the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority’s (IPSA) expenses register.

Mr Doogan, SNP MP for Angus, claimed for a £160 fine in January 2022.

The register also shows Mr Hoare, the MP for North Dorset who also chairs the Commons Northern Ireland Committee, claimed four times for £80 fines issued in November 2019, while Mr Afolami, MP for Hitchin and Harpenden, claimed for two £80 fines in December 2021.

The four cases were initially uncovered in an investigation by the Independent.

In a statement, Mr Afolami said: “[It was] completely inadvertent. All money repaid the moment that I knew about it.”

Ms Solloway, Mr Hoare and Mr Doogan have been approached by the BBC for comment.

Rishi Sunak decides not to order inquiry into Suella Braverman speeding row IPSA rules state that claims for penalty charges will not be paid to MPs.

The watchdog, which is also responsible for setting MPs’ pay independent of parliament, said that it has changed its expenses process to ensure any future claims will not be paid out.

“IPSA’s checks failed in some cases to identify these claims and some of them were paid. We will contact MPs and ask them to repay, where appropriate,” a spokesman said.

“We have changed our process to ensure any future such claims are not paid, and will reiterate the scheme rules to MPs.”

The spokesman added that the congestion charge can be claimed by MPs from outside London who drive into central London for work.

But that would not extend to an approval for expenses claims for fines that are incurred if the congestion charge is not paid on time.

It comes days after Prime Minister Rishi Sunak decided not to launch an inquiry into Home Secretary Suella Braverman’s handling of a speeding offence.

Ms Braverman was caught speeding last year, while she was attorney general, and asked officials for advice on arranging a private course to avoid penalty points on her licence. She later accepted a fine and points.

IPSA was established in 2009 after the scandal over MPs’ expenses.