26th October 2011
Today, despite the Eurozone crisis, the European Parliament is expected to vote in favour of a 5.23% increase for next year’s budget
, this will increase the EU spending to €133billion.
I believe that this is economic madness and have argued forcefully for a freeze in the European Union's budget. At a time when national governments are being forced to rein in spending the EU should be taking a lead by bringing forward their own austerity measures.
Together with my fellow Conservative MEPs I have tabled a string of amendments to achieve an overall budget freeze. The proposals include:
- Value for money, with all programmes and expenditure to be carefully analysed for viability, efficiency and effectiveness
- Budgetary restraint in times of ongoing national consolidation efforts.
- Any increases to be offset with cuts from other areas of the budget.
- Reductions to interpretation and translation which would save €27m
I support calls for a freeze for MEPs pay and backed an amendment expressing disappointment that too little was done to trim allowances.
It seems the majority of MEPs would rather protect their own salaries and benefits; whilst building an ever-bigger European bureaucracy; than giving value for money to constituents.
They may have no shame over sending ordinary taxpayers the bill for their actions, but I will continue all I can to fight for a budget freeze.