Derek Conway, Tory MP for Old Bexley and Sidcup, has been in a spot of bother over employing his son, Frederick, at a rate of £981 a month (equivalent to about £11750 pa). That may not be much of an issue normally, as it’s not as if plenty of MPs have their family on the payroll. However, Master Conway is currently a full time student in Newcastle, which one would think precludes having a concurrent full time job in London(and we tax payers are paying for both of these occupations, by the way).
Not only that, but: Mrs Conway is being paid £3271 a month (equiv. £39250 pa); Derek himself claims the maximum allowance for a second home in Central London (£21,632 pa) despite representing a constituency a few miles away from Westminster; he also claimed £4072 for car mileage in 2005/6, enough for over 500 round trips between his constituency and the Commons.
There are a few MPs who have to claim large amounts if they live at the other end of the country, and it’s not totally unreasonable to employ a family member if you can prove that they are being paid at a rate related to their effort, but I think this is a case of one totally taking the mickey.