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Culture minister Maria Miller to repay £5,800 following expenses inquiry

Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, Maria Miller
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Culture minister Maria Miller has made an apology to the House of Commons and been ordered to re-pay £5,800 following the publication of a critical report into her attitude towards an investigation of her expense claims.

Parliament’s standards committee’s report said Miller had contributed to “delay and difficulty” in the committee’s investigations by providing “incomplete documentation and fragmentary information”. It concluded her behaviour had breached MPs’ code of conduct.

The committee took action following a complaint that Miller had allowed her parents to live in a property for which she claimed almost £91,000 in second-home allowances between 2005/9. Although it found that neither she nor her parents benefitted financially from the arrangement, it ordered her to re-pay £5,800 in mortgage expenses to which it found she was not entitled.

In her 32-second statement to the House, Miller said: “The committee has recommended that I apologise to the House for my attitude to the commissioner’s inquiries, and I of course unreservedly apologise. I fully accept the recommendations of the committee and thank them for bringing this matter to an end”.

Prime minister David Cameron said: “Maria Miller is doing an excellent job as culture secretary and will continue to do that. If we look at this report, yes of course these issues do matter, but she was cleared of the original allegation made against her. An over-payment was found which she is going to pay back. She’ll make a full apology, and I think people should leave it at that.”

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