Tuesday, March 25, 2008

MPs to fight allowances disclosure

Tues 25 Mar 2008
The House of Commons is to fight the disclosure of MPs' second home allowances to the High Court, it was revealed.

A spokeswoman said the Commons authorities were concerned that an Information Tribunal ruling that MPs' addresses should be released would present a security risk.
A spokeswoman for the Commons Commission, which manages House affairs, said an appeal would be lodged by 4pm.

The Commons spokeswoman said there had been "great concern" among MPs about the release of their second home addresses, which the tribunal said last month must be published in all but exceptional circumstances.

"The threats that MPs can face are unpredictable and subject to change," she said.

The release of their home addresses could "inhibit democratic debate" on a range of sensitive issues, she added.

The Speaker is said to have been "mindful" of MPs' concerns and has sought advice from the security services.

"Having received advice he's concerned that the Information Tribunal may have misdirected itself in law in deciding that home addresses of MPs should always be published subject to only to limited exceptions," the spokeswoman said.

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