Bulk Fund MPs, Says United New Zealand
United New Zealand wants MPs to be bulk-funded.
However, it has little confidence Parliament will adopt such a plan.
United New Zealand leader, Hon Peter Dunne, called for the introduction of bulk-funding when appearing before Parliament's Government Administration Committee considering the Parliamentary Service Bill.
"In United's view, bulk-funding, on even an optional basis, would make MPs' funding more transparent, and improve public accountability," he said.
MPs are presently effectively funded for their office expenses, but not for telecommunications and travel, which are uncapped items.
Mr Dunne is calling for bulk-funding to be extended to include both telecommunications and travel.
"This would allow MPs much more flexibility in the use of their resources, as well as making them more accountable, and it would most likely lead to overall savings in public expenditure."
"However, the big parties do not want a bar of this because of the greater responsibility it would place on individual MPs to set and manage their own budgets effectively," he says.
Mr Dunne says opposition to bulk-funding from both Labour and National means it is effectively a dead issue for the term of this Parliament.
"Yet while they stall, the Parliamentary remains less transparent and accountable than it should be," he says.