Mon Feb 18, 2013 8:8PM GMT
Royal Family of Britain, which the government tries to sell as one of
the country’s tourism attractions, spends the public money in a way
which is nothing short of a disgrace.
The British public has considered a thorough and detailed review of
the royal family’s finances as a long overdue, which it seems is coming
true following a change in the law that allows the Members of Parliament
(MPs) to take a closer look into the royals’ finances.
Now, Queen Elizabeth II and the royal family face an inquiry into
their expenses which would decide whether they provide value for money
to the taxpayer.
“When Prince Charles [the second in line to the throne] spends tens
of thousands of pounds of public money on personal holidays without a
whisper of outrage from our politicians there is clearly something
wrong”, says Graham Smith, chief executive of the anti-monarchy campaign
“It is crucial that any such investigation abandons all sense of
deference for the royals and has a good hard look at how the palace is
wasting taxpayers’ money”, adds Graham Smith.
Therefore, the inquiry, to be launched later this year by the House
of Commons’ powerful Public Accounts Committee (PAC), will grill the
Queen’s closest allies, The Independent reports.
According to the report the PAC will decide on the scope of the
investigations after the National Audit Office (NAO) gets access to the
Queen’s finances next month.
The NAO is to prepare a report on the Queen’s finances that will be
the basis for the PAC’s further action, deemed to include calling palace
officials before the Commons to explain on their finances.
“[Committee chairperson] Margaret [Hodge] wants to do it - but
obviously it’s got to be a decision of the whole committee,” the paper
quoted a source as saying.
Republic says it has been pushing for greater scrutiny of royal
costs - estimated by the group to be over £200million a year - and has
recently written to the PAC chair Margaret Hodge calling for an
investigation into Prince Charles’s tax avoidance.
“The issue of tax must also be thoroughly investigated - it is not
acceptable that the Queen and her eldest son are exempt from the same
tax regimes as the rest of us”, said the chief executive of the
Some of the spending to be scrutinized are expected to be the royal
transport costs including the Royal Train and the Royal Flight, the
royals’ entertainment and the upkeep of palaces.
This also includes the Royal Estate assets including Regent Street
in London, Ascot racecourse and Windsor Great Park, 265,000 acres of
farmland, as well as Britain’s national seabed stretching out 12
nautical miles around the country.
However, it could be a hard question to answer whether the royals
are worth the money they spend irrespective of its easiness to audit
For example, the Queen will receive £36.1million in April to fund
official duties. The sum enjoys a 16 percent increase on the £31million
paid by taxpayers last year.
Despite the coalition government’s crippling austerity measures and
savage spending cuts, the amount of taxpayer’s funds going to the royal
family has increased last year.
Meanwhile, campaigners say it’s time the Treasury take steps to
close down this well entrenched tax avoidance scheme and tell the royals
they can no longer enjoy privileged tax status.
Thanks to: http://www.presstv.ir