LONDON - Britain published new rules yesterday after a scandal over lawmakers’ expenses, banning politicians from using taxpayers’ money to pay for mortgages on second homes or hire family members as staff.
Lawmakers also would not be able to claim expenses anymore for cleaners, gardeners, furniture, or lavish meals.
Christopher Kelly, a former civil servant who drafted the new rules, said it was difficult to calculate how much the new system will save, but predicted costs will be cut by at least $13.2 million a year, and likely more.
“Our proposals are reasonable and fair and bring Westminster into line with other walks of life and other legislatures,’’ Kelly said. “They recognize the unique circumstances of [a member of Parliament’s] life, but are shorn of the special features which gave scope for exploitation.’’
Kelly’s rules will be phased in over five years for serving lawmakers but enforced right away for legislators elected at the next national election - which must be held by June.