Those of you who read my blog last week would have seen the entry about Dave Anderson, Labour MP for Blaydon in Gateshead (where I live), being reported by me to the Serjeant at Arms about a misuse of Commons stationery and first class mail.
A brief summary of what happens is: I was sent anonymously a copy of the letter Anderson sent out on Commons headed notepaper in prepaid first class Commons envelopes to Labour members drumming up support for Labour council candidates, slagging off people like me as "2nd rate" councillors and calling on Labour to remain united during the leadership contest; I then passed on the letter to the Serjeant at Arms to complain that this was not a proper use of Commons facilities.
Well, today, I was emailed the reply from the Serjeant at Arms. It reads as follows:
Complaint regarding use of Parliamentary Stationery by Dave Anderson MP
Further to my letter of 23 January I am now writing to update you on the above matter. I have now been in touch with Mr Anderson and he has agreed that the letter which was sent out to local Labour party members was not an appropriate use of House stationery and an investigation was carried out.
This was a genuine mistake by office staff and Mr Anderson has asked to be invoiced for the full use of this stationery. His administrative staff have been reminded of the rules governing the use of House stationery and pre-paid envelopes and this situation should not arise again.
Thank you for bringing this to my attention. If you have any other queries regarding this matter please do not hesitate to contact me.
All just a dreadful mistake that has lumped Mr Anderson with a modest bill to pay!