1 Nov 2010

Travel spending secrecy wrong - Hide

4:10 pm on 1 November 2010

ACT Party leader Rodney Hide says it is wrong for Speaker of the House Lockwood Smith to cover up by spending MPs on international travel.

Dr Smith said last week that he would no longer make public the names of MPs who claimed rebates for private international travel.

In 2009, Mr Hide repaid $22,000 after taking his partner on international holidays to Hawaii and Europe.

Mr Hide says he does not believe the genie can be put back in the bottle because the public has an expectation that MPs are accountable. He says there needs to be more openness about public spending.

Mr Hide said the allowances and salaries of MPs should be set by an independent authority and that information should be subject to the Official Information Act.