EPP group defeated in transparency dispute
Transparency of MEP spending
A row is currently underway in the European Parliament over reforms to MEPs' General Expenditure Allowance. In today's vote on the Discharge of the European Parliament's budget for 2016, the EPP tried to water down commitments to reform. These were defeated.
Every year, almost 40 million euros is spent by MEPs without any accountability, oversight or control. MEPs receive over €4,400 a month for their office and admin costs but are under no obligation to report on how they spend it. The Greens/EFA group has consistently pushed for improvements to the system, to make it harder for Members to treat the money as a top-up to their salaries.
We have out-lined our demands and the background for the reforms on our website: https://www.greens-efa.eu/en/article/news/we-need-more-transparency-and-accountability-for-mep-spending/
Greens/EFA transparency spokesperson Benedek Jávor comments:
"The European Parliament will be shooting itself in the foot if it does not urgently bring some much needed transparency and accountability to its spending of taxpayers' money.
“The reforms we are calling for are simple and should already be in place in any democratic, open administration.
Greens/EFA MEP and Vice-President of the European Parliament, Heidi Hautala, comments:
"These much needed reforms would clearly be in the public interest. The argument that it costs too much to control the money or that oversight of the spending will infringe on MEPs' freedoms simply do not hold water in a modern democracy.
“We will continue to work towards achieving transparency and accountability in the European Parliament, both in the ad hoc working group and in the parliament’s bureau."