British politicians handed extra $12,450 in expenses to work from home
British politicians have each been given access to an additional £10,000 ($12,450) in order to help them work from home during the coronavirus crisis.
All 650 elected lawmakers will have access to the funds, the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority (IPSA), which regulates expenses, stated in new guidance.
Members of Parliament (MPs) already have access to a budget of up to £26,050 ($32,420) to run their constituency offices, and this cash will be made available on top of that.
The document, dated March 26, says the £10,000 is available to help “support the setting up of working from home arrangements,” including the purchase of equipment such as laptops and printers.
MPs can also claim for electricity and heating costs, plus phone bills.
The monthly credit card limit for MPs has been increased from £4,000 ($4,980) to £10,000 ($12,450) and the single transaction purchase limit upped from £2,000 ($2,490) to £5,000 ($6,220).
MPs will also have their usual 90-day deadline for expense claims suspended, and can submit them without a receipt.
“If you do not have a receipt or invoice due to the coronavirus and you cannot wait for reimbursement, you may submit your claim. Please include an explanation of why the evidence is unavailable, and we will pay the claim, asking you to submit the evidence later,” the guidance states.
The UK, which is one of the worst impacted countries with more than 7,000 deaths so far, has been on lockdown since March 24.
Millions of workers, including politicians, have been told to work from home and many others having lost their income.