The Police and Crime Commissioner for Milton Keynes has denied reports he set up a ‘sham office’ in order to claim extra expenses.
Anthony Stansfeld had an office set up for him in Hungerford police station, just nine miles from his Berkshire home to avoid the ‘non-productive’ time he would have spent travelling to the office headquarters in Kidlington – a 70-mile round trip.
Mr Stansfeld was responding to claims made in the Mail on Sunday, which reported his mileage claims had risen by more than 6,000 per cent between January and February.
In January his mileage expenses totalled just 16 miles at a cost of £7.20. He then claimed 1,005 miles and £452.25 in February before claiming 1,334 miles at a cost of £611.90 in March.
A statement made on behalf of Mr Stansfeld said: “The availability of this local facility is particularly cost-effective on days when the PCC is undertaking his local and national duties elsewhere in the Thames Valley, away from his office at Kidlington, and especially at weekends.
“The mileage expenses that the PCC claimed between November 2012 – March 2013 were in respect of him incurring relatively high mileage, driving his own car, to undertake official business. Since April the PCC has had the use of a Force ex-fleet car; this is a five-year old high mileage, low value, vehicle that was scheduled for disposal by the Force. Accordingly, the PCC has not submitted any mileage claims since then.”
MP for Milton Keynes North, Mark Lancaster, said: “It’s absolutely right that all expenses claimed by Mr Stansfeld should be made public and it is for him to justify to the general public the reason he claimed them. If there is any doubt over the legitimacy of the claims there clearly should be an enquiry.”