Monday, 26 January 2009

Cash and peerages

When you've paid for your peerage, how do you make the money back? Easy call - sell what you've just bought. Cash for peerages followed by cash for peers.

It's all tied up with Parliamentary Consultancies. That's one of the reasons why paid advocacy is illegal for MSPs, and why the Code Of Conduct for MSPs goes even further:
5.1.6 The section of the Code on General Conduct (Section 7) sets out the standards expected in relation to acceptance of hospitality, gifts and benefits. In addition to this and the statutory provisions in the Interests of Members of the Scottish Parliament Act 2006, Members:
should not accept any paid work to provide services as a Parliamentary strategist, adviser or consultant, for example, advising on Parliamentary affairs or on how to influence the Parliament and its Members.
Quite right, MSPs should not get dragged into that mire, especially not someone who might be have some inside knowledge of peerages and whose Register of Interests reads
I am a director, as is my wife, of Carrick Court Associates Ltd, a consultancy business. Carrick Court Associates receives remuneration of between £45,001 -
£50,000 per annum for my work from Eversheds LLP and GovNet Communications (as Chairman of the Editorial Board). I work approx 3 days per month in relation to the consultancy. As a Director of Carrick Court Associates I estimate that I will receive between £15,001 and £20,000 per annum in expenses and dividend. [Registered 24 May 2007, Amended interest 4 July 2007, Amended interest 13 July

Or whose House of Lords register reads:
*12(a) Parliamentary consultancy agreements
A political and parliamentary consultancy with Eversheds LLP. Payment of £3000 per calendar month (excluding VAT if applicable) for consultancy services for 36 days per annum (all fees are paid to Carrick Court Associates Ltd - see 12(g) Chairman of Editorial Board of Govnet (a client of my company Carrick Court Associates), £10,000 per annum


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