Monday, 24 October 2016

The Members' Money

The Heat Street web site has an exclusive story about Labour's shadow chancellor being under investigation for hiding a £30,000 + donation from the TSSA trade union.

I suspect there are tiny numbers of TSSA members who pay a political levy to the Labour Party, but nonetheless the union is handing over large sums of cash of members' money to fund a salary which for some reason hides the additional amounts due in respect of tax and pension contributions.

So much for transparency and consulting the members.

Exclusive: John McDonnell Under Investigation ‘For Hiding £30,000 Donation’

By Miles Goslett - Heat Street 

Shadow chancellor John McDonnell is being investigated by the parliamentary standards commissioner over allegations he breached House of Commons financial rules.

McDonnell has been accused of failing to register a financial interest on time.
Although the standards commissioner, Kathryn Hudson, refused to comment on the specifics of her inquiry, it is believed to relate to McDonnell accepting a donation worth more than £30,000 from the TSSA transport union eight months ago.

It appears that he waited seven months – until late July – to register the interest, effectively keeping it secret and therefore breaking the rule that all such financial declarations must be lodged within 28 days of receipt.

The TSSA began paying the salary of McDonnell’s chief economic adviser, James Meadway, last December. As of July, McDonnell said it had reached a total of £30,115 “plus pension and tax contribution.”

Meadway, who is employed by the TSSA, is a former member of the hard-left Socialist Workers Party and co-author of a book called Marx for Today.

As well as funding McDonnell’s office, the TSSA also donated office space in its north London headquarters worth £3,000 to his close friend Jeremy Corbyn last summer.

McDonnell’s press spokesman, James Mills, did not return calls. Neither did his office.