Published: April 3, 2013
Burnham-On-Sea MP Tessa Munt criticised over iPad expenses

Burnham-On-Sea's MP is among scores of MPs who have been criticised this week for receiving free iPads from Commons authorities to work on 'paperless select committees'.

National press reports say the tablet computers have been given to 91 MPs, including Tessa Munt, after they agreed not to receive information in paper form.

Campaigners have questioned why the MPs are entitled to the iPads when there are cheaper tablet computers on the market.

Matthew Sinclair, Chief Executive of the TaxPayers' Alliance, said: "It is incumbent on the Commons authorities to demonstrate that money really is being saved by paying for tablets instead of automatically printing out committee documents."

"Otherwise people will suspect that it's a ruse to allow the MPs to get their hands on the latest gizmo courtesy of the taxpayer. In any event, iPads are a top-of-the-range, premium product and there are much cheaper alternatives available which would save even more taxpayers' money."

The MPs are all members of one of nine committees which scrutinise the work of central Government on behalf of the House of Commons. They include the Business, Innovation and Skills, the Public Accounts, Energy and Climate Change and Environment, Food and Rural Affairs committees.

The Commons said the iPads have been lent on "a pilot basis is part of a wider programme of change in the Committee Office, which will reduce costs, increase efficiency, and switch some major areas of work to a digital-first approach."


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