Select Committee on Standards and Privileges Second Report


Annex 192

Letter to Mr Jonathan Upton from the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards

Than you for your letter of 20 April concerning the Scottish Labour Party campaign budget documents.

I am sorry that you have been unable to trace the origin of the first of the budget papers which mentions Mr McKinney. It seems particularly strange that no record exists of a document which appears to be official and which has been prepared on the same basis and using the same style as the other two. In view of the importance of this matter to my inquiries into the complaint against Dr Reid and Mr Maxton, could I please ask you to redouble your efforts to establish the source of the document and if possible to confirm its authenticity. I would be grateful if you could also let me know who was personally responsible for preparing the two documents whose status is not in question. I am also anxious to ascertain the precise dates on which the documents were drawn up. From the nature of the information contained in them relating to Kevin Reid and Chris Winslow I presume that the respective dates of compilation are May 1998, early October 1998 and January 1999, but I would appreciate confirmation of this.

I have now had a chance to examine the budget documents in more detail. As the figures relating to Kevin Reid and Chris Winslow are not entirely clear, I would be grateful if you could assist me further by providing the following information. In the hope that you will be able to track down the first document, I have addressed my questions to each of the three budget papers.

You will see from the attached table the monthly salary due to Chris Winslow and Kevin Reid from the Labour Party during the period June 1998 to June 1999 inclusive. This has been calculated using the information contained in each of the two contract letters sent to both Mr Reid and Mr Winslow. Thus, Mr Winslow is shown as receiving in each full month between July and October 1998 inclusive 1/12 of his initial salary of £6,000, and, between November 1998 and June 1999, 1/12 of his increased salary of £12,000. Mr Reid is shown as receiving 1/12 of his initial salary of £4,000 until the end of September 1998; the figure of £922 for October 1998 is an estimate based on 12 days at the initial salary and 19 days at the increased salary; and the figure for November 1998 to June 1999 inclusive represents 1/12 of the full increased salary of £18,132.

I am having some difficulty reconciling these figures with those shown in the budgetary documents which you have seen. In particular:-

    (i)  In document 1 (which I assume dates from around May 1998):-

      (a)  why is Chris Winslow shown as receiving £1,100 per month throughout the period from June 1998 to May 1999, when his Labour Party salary was only £500 a month until November 1998?
      (b)  what is the basis for the monthly figure of £1,100 for Chris Winslow, given that 1/12 of £12,000 is £1,000?
      (c)  how is the total salary figure of £13,200 for Chris Winslow arrived at?
      (d)  why is Kevin Reid shown as receiving £1,100 per month throughout the period from June 1998 to May 1999, when his Labour Party salary was only £333 per month until October 1998?
      (e)  what is the basis for the monthly figure of £1,100 for Kevin Reid?
      (f)  how is the total salary figure of £13,200 for Kevin Reid arrived at?
    (ii)  In document 2 (which I assume dates from about October 1998):-

      (a)  why is Chris Winslow shown as receiving £550 per month throughout the period June 1998 to June 1999, when his contracted Labour Party salary from November 1998 onwards was £12,000, 1/12 of which is £1,000?
      (b)  what is the basis for the monthly figure of £550 for Chris Winslow?
      (c)  how is the total salary figure of £7,160 for Mr Winslow arrived at?
      (d)  why is Kevin Reid shown as receiving £366 per month until October 1998 when 1/12 of his contracted Labour Party salary for that period was £333?
      (e)  what is the basis of the figure of £1,650 for the period between October 1998 and June 1999 inclusive, when Mr Reid`s actual monthly salary from the Party during that period was 1/12 of £18,132, namely £1,510?
      (f)  how is the total salary figure of £16,314 for Mr Reid arrived at?
    (iii)  In document 3 (which I assume dates from January 1999):-

      (a)  what is the basis for the total salary figure of £11,550 for Chris Winslow?
      (b)  what is the basis for the total salary figure of £16,314 for Kevin Reid?

I would be grateful if, in answering this letter, you could indicate where, if anywhere, you dispute my calculations.

May I please have a reply by 10 May?

4 May 2000





 
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