Wednesday, 30 Sep 2020

MPs beg watchdog to reimburse their ski holidays after recess cancelled

MPs are understood to have begged the parliamentary watchdog to reimburse their expensive ski holidays after the February recess was cancelled to tackle the Brexit chaos.

The Commons had been expected to rise at the end of business on February 14 and return on February 25.

But on Thursday the government confirmed they would not bring forward the motion needed for the House to rise.

It is a major blow for MPs – many of whom will have been looking forward to holidays with their families.

SNP MP Pete Wishart joked that the decision had gone down like a "bucket of sick" as many had already booked skiing trips.

And IPSA, the parliamentary watchdog, has refused to reimburse any money for trips because recess has been cancelled in advance. 

They said it would not be treated in the same way as a Parliamentary recall when the authority would pay for an MP to return to the Commons.

A spokeswoman confirmed to the Mirror:  "IPSA does not compensate MPs for the cancellation of holidays when recess is cancelled in advance."

It comes as Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt have the biggest hint yet that the date when the UK leaves the EU will be pushed back.

Labour MP Ian Murray, a supporter of the pro-EU Best for Britain campaign, said: "The cancelling of February recess is the right thing to do but it must be done for a purpose.

"There’s supposedly masses of legislation needed before the end of March, but it seems the government isn’t even trying to do the important stuff in that week. It looks like a slimy PR move."

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