Sinn Fein Finance Minister Wants To Pay For Car With Unused Expenses

It has been revealed that Sinn Fein finance spokesman Pearse Doherty wants to put a surplus in travel expenses claim, €8,000, towards the cost of a recent car purchase.

It is the first time that a TD has made such a claim.

Last night, the Oireachtas Commission was unable to say if he can actually use the surplus travel expenses money towards his car.

The idea is that Mr Doherty would supply the invoice for the €15,000 car to retrospectively justify the surplus travel expenses claim.

TDs have to sign certificates declaring that they only use the expenses to pay for travel and accommodation – and they have to return any unspent money.

Last year, the Irish Independent reported that the Donegal South West TD broke Dail rules by using part of his travel and accommodation expenses to hire party workers.

Sinn Fein's foreign affairs spokesman Padraig MacLochlainn has also admitted using the "balance" of his travel expenses to pay for an extra constituency secretary.

Mr Doherty has raised questions about whether a car can be classified as a travel and accommodation expense.

In the wake of the controversy, all TDs have been reminded by Leinster House authorities to use travel and accommodation expenses for no other purpose.


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