12 Aug 2009

Former MPs defend travel subsidies

1:07 pm on 12 August 2009

Former Members of Parliament appear likely to formally resist any attempt to efforts to rein in their ongoing travel discounts.

Former MPs are allowed taxpayer subsidies of up to 90% on international travel - which has caused consternation, after recent disclosure of Parliamentary spending on individual MPs.

Association of Former Members of Parliament president Graham Kelly told Morning Report e group would resist any efforts to end the subsidies.

He said the discounts were a condition of employment.

Mr Kelly was a Labour MP from 1987 - 2003 and later served as New Zealand High Commissioner to Canada.

Under current rules, disgraced former MP Taito Philip Field could also retain his travel subsidies, despite being convicted of bribery and corruption.

The Speaker's office is currently considering the matter.