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The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA) is now responsible for the publication of details of MPs’ expenses. This Note sets out the background to the information made available by the Commons for Members’ allowances paid in the 2005-2010 Parliament. Following a decision of the High Court in 2008, the Commons prepared to release redacted receipts relating to allowances. In May and June 2009 the Daily Telegraph obtained a leaked copy of these receipts and printed a series of articles based on information gained from them. The subsequent expenses crisis led to the passage of the Parliamentary Standards Act 2009 and the creation of IPSA, which took over the administration of MPs’ allowances from the beginning of the new 2010 Parliament. Standard Note 5783 The Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority: operating the Members' Expenses Scheme gives further details.

IPSA consulted on its publication scheme under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 in June 2010. On 18 November 2010 it announced that it would publish the first tranche of information about allowances on 2 December and published a new policy on proactive disclosure. IPSA reiterated that it would not publish invoices and receipts as this would not be a good use of public money. There has been some media criticism of this decision.

Further media criticism followed, with the disclosure of details of rental arrangement by Members, where full details for 51 MPs were not made available, due to concerns about security.


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