Register Of Interests Of Members' Secretaries And Research Assistants [as at 16th December 2011]
In accordance with Resolutions made by the House of Commons on 17 December 1985 and 28 June 1993, holders of photo-identity passes as Members’ secretaries or research assistants are in essence required to register:
· Any occupation or employment for which they receive over £329 from the same source in the course of a calendar year, if that occupation or employment is in any way advantaged by the privileged access to Parliament afforded by their pass.
· Any gift (eg: jewellery) or benefit (eg: hospitality, services or facilities) they receive in the course of a calendar year, if the value of the gift or benefit exceeds £329 and if it in any way relates to or arises from their work in Parliament.
In Section 1 of the Register entries are listed alphabetically according to the staff member’s surname. Section 2 contains exactly the same information but entries are instead listed according to the sponsoring Member’s name.
The Register is compiled and maintained by the Office of the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards. Anyone whose details are entered on the Register is required to notify that office of any change in their registrable interests within 28 days of such a change arising. An updated edition of the Register is usually published every 4-6 weeks when the House is sitting.
Changes to the rules governing the Register are determined by the Committee on Standards and Privileges, although where such changes are substantial they are put by the Committee to the House for approval before being implemented.
Complaints, whether from Members, the public or anyone else alleging that a staff member is in breach of the rules governing the Register, should in the first instance be sent to the Registrar of Members’ Interests in the Office of the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards. The Registrar will then seek to resolve the complaint, though in serious cases the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards may seek the agreement of the Committee on Standards and Privileges to undertake a formal investigation.
In minor cases of infringement, the Commissioner may, at his discretion, apply the rectification procedure. Under this, a late entry is printed in bold italics in the Register for 12 months from its first appearing. More major cases may be the subject of formal investigation and will be reported to the Committee on Standards and Privileges.
The Register can be viewed at www.parliament.uk by looking under ‘Registers of Interests’ in the A-Z Index on the home page there. Should you require any further advice please contact:
The Assistant Registrar
Office of the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards
House of Commons
London SW1A OAA
Tel: 020 7219 0401
Fax: 020 7219 0490
Email: [email protected]