George Howarth MP
The latest bombshell regarding the MP’s expense claims debacle surrounds a mysterious claim made by the MP for Knowsley North and Sefton East, George Howarth, who despite telling his constituents that he commissioned the ICM telephone poll to gauge his constituents views on the Tesco proposal for the Town, it appears he claimed the remarkable sum of £8,283.75 cost back under the guise of a communications allowance.
Notwithstanding the fact that Mr Howarth is told what to do by the local Labour group he appears to have based his support for the Tesco plan on the extremely slim majority, 51%, that ICM found in favour of the project; allowing for the fact that it has been admitted that sixty two of the respondents actually lived outside the target area which means that an 8% automatic error occurred and although we don’t know how these additional respondents actually voted, being outside the effected area, we can guess. It seems a pretty desperate majority to hang your credibility on.
After this slimmest of majorities he went on to totally ignore the thousands of residents who told him again and again, yes we're in favour of appropriate regeneration of the town but we're not in favour of a 50,000-seat stadium.
Rather than representing his constituents views Mr. Howarth went on to support the ill conceived planning application which was inevitably called and has cost the Knowsley taxpayer £1,500,000 so far and there's more to come.
There were only 503 telephone calls made in the poll; the question on everyone's lips is how does a call to a constituent in Kirkby cost £16.48?