All Kent MP’s have cost the UK Taxpayer the sum of £2,697,412, for the financial year 2017/18. (All information is drawn from IPSA’s website.). This is a 3.85% increase on last year (£2,597,410) and is roughly in line with the retail price index.
The annual basic salary for all MPs for 2017/18 was £76,011 (as of 1 April 2017).
The most expensive Kent MP by far for 2017/18 was Charlie Elphicke, MP for Dover (pictured), who received £204,975. Charlie was Kent’s second most expensive MP last year. He received £182,847 in 2016/17. So Charlie takes Gold for being the most expensive MP in Kent for 2017/18. He was the 40th most expensive MP in parliament for the financial year 2017/18.
In November 2017, Elphicke was suspended from the Conservative Party after “serious allegations” made against him were referred to the police. Elphicke stated: “I am not aware of what the alleged claims are and deny any wrongdoing.”
In March 2018, Elphicke was told that he was accused of sex offences against two members of his staff. He said in response:
“I am completely confident I will be able to prove my innocence”. In April 2018, The Sunday Times reported that a rape allegation had been made against Elphicke in November 2017, at the height of the Westminster sex scandals, but that the police had not informed him of it for about five months.
The second most expensive MP in Kent and taking the silver medal position is Damian Collins MP for for Folkestone & Hythe (pictured below). For 2017/18 his spending was £182,003. Since we began publishing Kent MP’s expenses, Damian has NEVER fallen out of the top three. His rank overall spending puts him in 221st position. This is a man who has been called a “snake in the grass” and a “disgrace” by the largest donor to politics in political history, Aaron Banks who is under investigation by the National Crime Agency.
In Bronze medal position is Helen Grant MP for Maidstone & The Weald, (pictured above) whose rank overall spend was £177,721. Last year Grant was in 7th place in the table we produced. In 2016 Grant challenged Damian Collins in the elections for the chairmanship of the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee. She was not successful. Grant was the first black woman of mixed heritage to be elected as a Conservative MP. Grant has also been mired in controversy. Grant was also involved in controversy after the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA) found that the standard employment contract template for the majority of her staff had been amended although her husband, who was also employed by her, remained on an unaltered contract.