Greens admit housing allowance 'mistake'
The Green Party has admitted claiming above market rent for a house occupied by two of its MPs and says it paid back about $6000 to Parliamentary Services.
The Greens have been critical of other parties keeping expenses secret and called for transparency during the controversy about Finance Minister Bill English's housing allowance.
Mr English last week paid back all the money he had received since becoming a minister, about $32,000, and is no longer claiming any taxpayer money.
Green's co-leader Metiria Turei was questioned about the house rented by MPs Jeanette Fitzsimons and Catherine Delahunty on TV One's Q&A programme today.
Presenter Guyon Espiner said that between February and May this year the two MPs paid $1000 a week in rent, taxpayer money, which was nearly double the market rate.
"We made a mistake, we acknowledged that mistake, we fixed it and we've refunded the money," Ms Turei said.
"About $6000 was refunded...we're quite happy to be open about the process."
However, the Greens didn't disclose their mistake until today under questioning.
"You're quite right to raise it and the public quite rightly has a right to know, which is why we're telling you about it today," Ms Turei said.