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Tory MP claiming mortgage interest faces court over £54,000

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10/05/2013
The MPs' expenses watchdog is taking legal action against a Conservative MP for
Tory MP claiming mortgage interest faces court over £54,000

Stewart Jackson, MP for Peterborough, faces a legal battle in the High Court with the Independent Parliamentary Standards Authority after refusing to agree on the current value of his home.

Jackson also claimed £32,494.86 in mortgage interest expenses between May 2010 and August 2012 – the second highest claim after the £34,168.07 claimed by Linlithgow and Falkirk East MP Michael Connarty.

In the aftermath of the 2009 MPs’ expenses scandal, new rules demanded politicians should not benefit from any capital gains on publicly funded homes.

Jackson said he would be ‘forcefully resisting’ the litigation: “The essence of the dispute is my challenge of the valuations of 2010 and 2012.

“IPSA are seeking a cash sum on a so-called capital gain ‘profit’ on my family home, in which I live and have not sold. The money which IPSA is demanding retrospectively is more than the total amount I received when I was claiming mortgage interest and the property is now valued at less than we purchased it for in 2005.

“Their assumption is that the value of my property rose by almost 20% over two years whilst house prices fell by 3% in my constituency in the same period.”

He had paid for a separate valuation and made a ‘reasonable offer’ to IPSA to settle the claim, he said.

In absolute terms, David Jones, MP for Clwyd West, saw his home in the exclusive Westminster area increase in value the most, paying IPSA £81,446.00 for capital gains.

East Londonderry MP Gregory Campbell’s home in the up and coming area of Vauxhall saw the second largest increase, of £61,403.18. House prices in the area increased by 7.81% over the past three years.

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