STANDARDS in public life have come under intense scrutiny in the last fortnight, leaving public confidence at an all-time low.

Many MPs have second jobs, with some, like Sir Geoffrey Cox coining in vast sums on top of their already high salaries.

Freebies, cash for answering questions and donations from the private sector are also the source of deep concern.

FULL LIST: The North East MPs raking in thousands in donations and second jobs

This week, The Northern Echo lifts the lid on where MPs in our region get their income as part of our The Money Trail investigation tracing the cash behind our MPs.

We tracked the cash trail using the Register of Members' Financial Interests, and while there is no suggestion of any wrongdoing, there are some surprising results.

We're publishing the records held for every MP in the North East and North Yorkshire to help you understand how your politician compares.

What exactly is on the register

There are ten main categories on the register, which is maintained and updated by the Parliamentary for Commissioner for Standards, and require an MP to declare, where appropriate.

MPs in England must declare additional paid employment (second jobs), donations, gifts, hospitality and any homes where the value is more than £100,000 and/or provides rental income of more than £10,000 a year.

They must also declare any shares they have which amount to more than 15 percent of the issues share capital of that company or more than 15 percent of a partnership, while they must declare any shares valued more than £70,000.

When it comes to family, MPs are required to declare whether any members are employed and receive more than £700 in a calendar year as this comes from taxpayers' money (parliamentary expenses).

MPs are also required to declare the details of any family members involved in "lobbying," which is when an individual tries to persuade someone in Parliament to support a specific policy or campaign.

What's on North Durham MP Kevan Jones' register

These are the figures for North Durham's Labour MP, Kevan Jones from Monday, November 1.

Does he have a second job or additional work 

No entries were recorded on the register, meaning he does not receive income from a second job or additional work, nor did he receive any donations, gifts or any hospitality.

Does he have a home of signficant value on the register

However, Mr Jones is recorded as having a share in a residential property in Nottinghamshire since March 2019, which has a value of more than £100,000 or gives a rental income of more than £10,000 a year.

Extra entries on the register

These are further entries which help to support previous listings on the register.

"I am an unremunerated director of NE First Credit Union (previously the Prince Bishop Community Bank), a non-profit making credit union.

"I spend about an hour per month attending Board meetings. (Registered 05 October 2012, updated 19 July 2018)

"From April 2018, Trustee (unpaid) of the Commonwealth War Graves Foundation, a charitable foundation that highlights the work of the Commonwealth War Graves Commission. (Registered 26 July 2018; updated 10 January 2020)

"From 11 February 2020, an Hon. Vice President of the Society of Maritime Industries, a non-profit company. This is an unremunerated post. (Registered 13 February 2020)."

The Northern Echo contacted Kevan Jones for comment.


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