MP Neil Carmichael says it's 'time to move on' following Maria Miller controversy

4:02pm Friday 4th April 2014

By Kate Wilson

STROUD MP Neil Carmichael has said parliamentarians need to be 'transparent' when it comes to their expenses in light of the Maria Miller controversy.

Speaking after her recent visit to the Five Valleys Mr Carmichael, echoing David Cameron's sentiments, said Mrs Miller, Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, had learnt a 'salutary lesson' but it was now 'time to move on'.

An inquiry was launched into her expenses in December 2012.

It cleared her of making false expenses claims, but said her 'submission of incomplete' evidence to the inquiry had breached the MPs' code of conduct.

The Commons Committee on Standards ordered her to repay £5,800 to cover over-claiming of mortgage expenses after she failed to cut her claims as interest rates fell.

In the Commons yesterday, Thursday, Mrs Miller apologised to MPs for her attitude towards an inquiry into her expenses.

The controversy comes just a week after the Culture Secretary visited Stroud to discuss broadband and the Fastershire project which is being implemented in parts of the district.

Mrs Miller met residents and local stakeholders at The Bell at Selsley on Thursday, March 27 to discuss the Government’s ongoing investment to ensure that 90 per cent of households have superfast broadband by 2015.

Mr Carmichael raised queries forwarded by residents from areas including Chalford, Coopers Edge, Purton and Stonehouse, where homeowners and businesses have struggled with low broadband speeds.

During the meeting Mrs Miller said: “Broadband is an essential aspect of quality of life. Parents want their children to be able to do their homework on the computer at home; rural businesses want to be able to compete, and faster broadband is an essential part of that.”

After the meeting Mr Carmichael said: “I am delighted that Maria Miller was able to join us today, and to see what the Valleys and Vale has got going for it.

“Faster broadband around the constituency is crucial to encouraging business investment and boosting the Stroud economy, and I will continue my work to ensure that superfast broadband is rolled out across the district.”

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