The approaching General Election will of course give us (eventually) an opportunity to read manifestos, or presumably e-manifestos. It is amazing that despite the 2 year election campaign fought by the main parties that as yet we have not seen any manifestos or even draft manifestos, despite the numerous promises and faux promises being made such as those from David Cameron yesterday. Whilst there are all sorts of important issues to be included is it possible that one of the parties will commit to reduce public spending in an area which has previously appeared to be exempt from any meaningful cost cutting. According to the Parliament website there are 1,550 people working in the House of Commons and 450 in the House of Lords. In addition to this there are probably at least another 1500 people working for MPs and Lords in their own offices and then there are 900 Lords and 650 MPs. If we assume that the average cost to you and I for these posts is £50,000 (and that is being very conservative) and that only 500 Lords are counted in the calculations that would work out at around £250M plus the cost of running the various buildings and cars and catering etc.
I would like to see a meaningful commitment to reduce the size of the Commons and the Lords and to also slim down the rest of the Parliamentary Estate in any Manifesto that is hoping I will vote for the Party. It doesn’t seem too unreasonable bearing in mind that the two main Parties are already promising to cut public services.