Monday, 31 May 2010

Is New Legislation Required?




What's a politician's best friend? Their Blackberry? Their laptop? Their shredder? Aye, that's it!

All too often, when a scandal hits the government, we hear about shredders being busy. They were especially 'busy' in Downing Street before the police investigated the Cash for Peerages incident.

Once again the troubled quango, Strathclyde Partnership for Transport, is in the news. It's alleged that receipts from business trips worth more than £32,000 were shredded.

Is it time legislation was passed to stop this blatant abuse in public offices? Businesses are required to keep all records for a period of at least 6 years. Documents relating to government grants must generally be kept for 4 years and where grant aid is being received, no document should be destroyed without consulting the relevant government department.

Shouldn't the same rules apply to government departments and any organisation which receives taxpayers' money? I certainly think so.

16 comments:

Dramfineday said...

To True it should...........better still when the claims are submitted, that's the last the claiment will see of the receipts (unless there is an issue) and that all receipts are kept under lock and key for five years under the control of the financial director. If they have been destroyed with or without his authority within that time frame then his butt's in the sling.

subrosa said...

Someone has to take responsibility for shredding documents Dram and nobody does in public life. It's seen as a 'get out of jail card free' to me.

tris said...

It is so sickening that these people stuff us for so much money and then when it looks like they have been rumbled they shred the evidence.

I suspect the best plan is to expect them to provide the evidence, and if they have shredded it then, they should be assumed guilty and have their heads chopped off...


Oooops sorry, got carried away and showed the real me in that last sentence....

subrosa said...

Maybe there should be shredder licences Tris or specific shredder departments run by the military.

Maybe I'm going a little too far lol.

Mrs Rigby said...

Oh yes, you're absolutely right.

Didn't a certain Mr Blair shred all his personal stuff before leaving Downing Street, which is why his 'expenses' can't be checked?

subrosa said...

I'm sure you're right Mrs R. How else would he have been able to sit in front of the Iraq Inquiry?

Apogee said...

I think Tris, 00:27 has it about right.

Fiale said...

Should charge them with destruction of public property, vandalism, aide and abetting potential fraud :-)

Indyanhat said...

In the case of expenses claimed whee he evidence has been shreded , it should be simple, claim not allowed!and whatever the sum claimed should be multiplied by 10 and taken from the person in charge of the department responsable for the claim, and the claimant themselves. Where the two are the same then add them up. plus an automatic jail sentence of 18 months minimum for fraud!
As far as personal papers like Bliars case, all shredded papers should be considered an attempt to pervert the course of justice and carry a 10 year sentence with no appeal.
Tris, hanging is really too good for them, but I agree in principle with the side you let slip!!

subrosa said...

Aye he does Apogee. I suspect you support his punishment regime too? ;)

subrosa said...

We should Fiale, but what I'm wondering is should legislation, directly associated with shredding be brought it. I think there already are laws concerning the destruction of evidence but perhaps shredding needs to be added to it.

subrosa said...

In this case Indyan, the people involved have already resigned. I'm all for the automatic sentence though and it may waken up those who tell their minions to destroy documents which legally should be kept for a specific time.

Tory Totty Online said...

Clearly another case of us and them Sb! Why should we be surprised? Legislation definitely needs passing.

Antisthenes said...

One spends all ones time ranting against excessive legislation and something like this comes along which definitely justifies enacting a new law to ensure the preservation of documentation. It's not fair.

subrosa said...

Yoohoo TT. I think an email to my MP is in order about this.

subrosa said...

It's not fair. But are our legislators going to pass a law to ban shredding Antisthenes? I very much doubt it. They're the guilty users, we only use ours to protect our own identities.

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