April 2014: This is Jimmy Hood
James “Jimmy” Hood (born 16 May 1948) is a British Labour Party politician, who has been the Member of Parliament (MP) for Lanark and Hamilton East since 2005. He was first elected in 1987, as MP for Clydesdale. He has remained a backbencher throughout his parliamentary career, serving on various select committees, including Defence 1997-2001.
Educated at Lesmahagow High School, Motherwell Technical College and the University of Nottingham he worked with the NCB for 23 years, as a mining engineer. He became a NUM trade union official in 1973. During the Miners’ Strike of 1984-5 he led the striking Nottinghamshire miners.
He has been married to Marion McCleary since 1967, they have a son and a daughter and two grandchildren. He suffered a heart attack in 1998.
November 2008: Hood supports UK national football team
Hood was one of 18 MPs who signed a Commons motion backing a Team GB football team at the 2012 Olympics, saying football “should not be any different from other competing sports and our young talent should be allowed to show their skills on the world stage”. The football governing bodies of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland are all opposed to a Great Britain team, fearing it would stop them competing as individual nations in future tournaments.
February 2014: Hood places self interest before his constituents
It was Lanark’s very own Jim Hood that sparked the controversy which ignited fury across social networks; as my constituency MP, I found his words particularly alarming.
It can easily be viewed on YouTube for anyone who wants evidence of Jim Hood’s words, which can easily be interpreted as against his constituents.
He said “If the Scottish People are to be better off economically, I’d still be against Scottish Independence, and I’d still vote no.”
Not only do Jim Hood’s words declare that he values his personal interests higher than the interests of the Scottish people, but that he values his personal interests higher than the interests of his constituents – the very people who put a tick next to his name at the ballot box to ensure his big salary.
The people of Lanark through to Larkhall have elected this man for nearly 30 years, and for him to make a statement which indicates that he cares not for the economic prosperity of his own people I interpret as downright shameful – no wonder turnouts are so low at elections when MPs like Jim Hood appear so self interested, and careerist.
I believe that the problem doesn’t just lie with Jim Hood, but with the a large portion of the Labour Party at Westminster, who only reflect self-interest and a lust for power at Westminster. http://www.yesclydesdale.org/featured/inplaceofjimhood.html
Video: Hood said he would vote against independence even if it meant the Scottish people would be better off economically. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yuj1bKFldlc
November 2009: Refuge supporting homeless ex-soldiers threatened with closure by Jim Hood MP
About 6 minutes into the video, Griffin explains that ex-soldiers are at the bottom of the housing queue, below everyone, including illegal immigrants and asylum seekers many of whom are bogus. Earlier a local ‘Labour’ MP, Jim Hood, said he would close the charity because BNP members donated. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TKn5OUrgBY4
May 2009: MPs’ expenses: Jimmy Hood claimed up to £1,000 per month on second homes allowance
He designated a London property as his second home for expenses purposes, entitling him to reclaim the cost of its upkeep.
Before April 2008, MPs did not have to provide receipts for some categories of maintenance work if each type of claim totalled under £250 per month.
He used the allowance to claim back £200 per month for cleaning his second home, and up to £200 per month on “repairs, insurance and security”.
He also occasionally claimed money for “service and maintenance”. All but four of this type of claims, submitted over a four-year period, were less than £250, and therefore did not require receipts.
He also claimed £400 per month for food, the maximum allowed without receipts.
Altogether, he was able to use his second homes allowance to claim up to £1,000 per month without receipts or a precise description of work carried out.
In the 2004/05 financial year, he claimed £400 per month for food for 11 months and £200 in August 2004, even when the Commons was in recess.
He also claimed £200 per month for repairs, insurance and security, and four claims for service and maintenance.
A similar pattern of claims was made in the following three financial years.
He was recompensed between £600 and £1,000 per month across the four categories of expense without receipts, except on infrequent occasions where the £250 limit was exceeded for service and maintenance.
Three of these claims were successful because he provided an invoice, but one, for £360.52 in November 2005, was not, because no receipt was submitted.
The £250 limit remained until April 2008, when the threshold for receipts was lowered.
His monthly claims also included mortgage interest on his designated second home, the amount of which varied from £728.68 at the end of 2004 to £445.14 at the start of 2007/08.
He also made a series of expenses claims for furnishings and household goods for his designated second home in London.
In March 2006, he claimed £1,500 for furniture, including a bed and headboard, and £1,400 for carpets.
The following July, he claimed more than £1,000 for household goods bought at the electrical shop, Comet, including £489.95 for a 26-in LCD television, a cooler and humidifier (£89.99) and a deep fat fryer (£39.99).
Asked about the maintenance charges, he said, “they were permissible under the old expenses system.
November 2013: Jim Hood and nine other Scottish Labour MPs didn’t bother to vote for the Labour motion against the Bedroom Tax
That this House regrets the pernicious effect on vulnerable and in many cases disabled people of deductions being made from housing benefit paid to working age tenants in the social housing sector deemed to have an excess number of bedrooms in their homes.
Calls on the Government to end these deductions with immediate effect.
Furthermore calls for any cost of ending them to be covered by reversing tax cuts which will benefit the wealthiest and promote avoidance, and addressing the tax loss from disguised employment in construction.
And further calls on the Government to use the funding set aside for discretionary housing payments to deal with under – occupation by funding local authorities so that they are better able to help people with the cost of moving to suitable accommodation.
Result; Government won 252 – 226 (26 votes). A total of 41 Labour MP’s either didn’t vote or abstained.
February 2010: In the wake of the House of Commons expenses scandal, 29 Scottish MPS were ordered to repay some of what they received.
James Hood: Overpaid mortgage interest, food. Repayment recommended: £5413.49. Repayment received: £5413.49. Balance: Zero.
March 2008: Bob Doris MSP condemns Glasgow Labour MPs on Iraq vote
Bob Doris MSP condemned outright the actions of Scottish Labour MPs, (including Jim Hood) who last night voted against holding an enquiry into the Iraq war.
Speaking in Glasgow Mr Doris said: “Yet again, Labour MPs have failed to represent their constituents. “Last week they voted to close Post Offices, this week they have voted to cover up the lies that lead Scotsmen and women to their deaths in Iraq. “Scot’s have constantly condemned the Labour Governments actions in taking us into an illegal war based on a pack of lies.
Yet their so called representatives in London have ignored them and voted to throw a blanket over the whole shameful episode. “They constantly tell us that the war was just.
Well why don’t they tell that to the families of the hundreds of thousands who dies innocent, helpless deaths. “But even if they are convinced – what have they to hide from an enquiry? “Surely in their world, an enquiry would absolve them?
“It is another disgraceful episode from people who put career before principle and party before Scotland. “Perhaps they could get a ticket back to Scotland and explain to their constituents why they have let them down again.” The Chilcott Inquiry, cost to date £9million is yet to report.
March 2014: The 30 Scottish Labour MPs That Voted For Osborne’s Welfare Cap
As a service to you, here is the list of those ‘weekend socialists’ who voted with the Tories to cap the level of spending allocated to helping the poorest in our community. http://petewishart.wordpress.com/2014/03/26/the-30-weekend-socialists/
July 2009: Scottish MP gets money for nothing as ‘second job’ pay revealed
Jim Hood, the Scots Labour MP, admitted pocketing £625 a month – in addition to his MP’s salary of £64,766 – as a consultant for Scottish Coal.
This adds up to a £7,500 a year boost to the income of the veteran politician, an MP since 1987 and leader of the Nottinghamshire miners during the strikes of the 1980s.
His task, “to advise on parliamentary matters as they pertain to the coal industry” on behalf of Scottish Coal. When asked, under new Commons rules on disclosure, how many hours he spent on the consultancy in return for the latest monthly payment, Mr Hood replied, “Nil.”
Comment from a constituent; I once asked for an appointment with Jimmy Hood. I asked him to bring to Parliament the question of allowing the continuation of free postage for our Troops in Iraq. He said he would consider it, but also reminded me that life can be made very difficult for the lives of Troops on the front line if families at home meddled with the Politics of War. I doubt his Secretary included that little threat into her shorthand!
He recently wrote to me inviting me to display his ‘little red card’ in my window if I wished to participate in his local Constituency walkabout. If your reading this Jim, ‘I’ll leave what I have to say to you at a more public gathering than have you contaminate my doorstep!
January 2010: Mainshill Solidarity Campaign against open-cast mining in South Lanarkshire
Jimmy Hood, MP for Lanark and Hamilton East, has a £7,500 a year contract with Scottish Coal to “advise on parliamentary matters as they pertain to the coal industry”.
But the veteran politician, a former mining engineer, admitted yesterday he could not remember exactly when he last did any work for the company. “I advise Scottish Coal on anything to do with legislation, although they haven’t asked me anything for some time,” he said.
“It is so long since I advised them on anything, the last thing was probably the floods at Longannet.” Scotland’s last deep coal mine at Longannet in Fife was closed down after an underground dam burst in 2002, with the loss of 500 jobs.
Last night, the SNP questioned whether Mr Hood was also more interested in pursuing “lucrative” consultancy work than his constituents’ interests And Scottish Green party leader Patrick Harvie MSP claimed the arrangement, “smacks of an ongoing pay-off” to ignore environmental concerns about opencast coal mining in his area.
The MP, who was leader of the Nottinghamshire miners during the 1980s strikes, said he began his consultancy work with Scottish Coal in 2001, replacing former Midlothian Labour MP Eric Clarke. The precise arrangements only came to light when new rules were introduced last July, forcing MPs to declare their income from second jobs on the Commons Register of Interests. Last week, Mr Hood made an identical entry on the register for the ninth consecutive month: “£625 received. Hours: nil.” The money he is paid for doing nothing comes on top of his £65,000 MP’s salary.
By contrast, voters in his constituency, a former mining area that is one of Labour’s safest seats in Scotland, have an average hourly pay of just £9.37.
A spokeswoman for the SNP said: “Jimmy Hood seems to have struck gold with his coal mine consultancy. “But after the disturbing lobbying revelations about his Labour colleagues in London, Jimmy Hood’s constituents may be left wondering whether their MP is also more interested in lucrative consultancies rather than constituent concerns.”
Mr Harvie said: “Jimmy Hood has notoriously failed to assist or represent those people whose lives are being blighted by opencast coal mines in his constituency and local area. “The fact that he has been pocketing large amounts of cash from Scottish Coal for years, for essentially doing nothing for them, nor against them, smacks of an ongoing pay-off from the company to allow it to continue polluting unchecked.”
During Mr Hood’s recent months of inaction, Scottish Coal was given planning permission to open a hugely controversial opencast coal mine just outside his own constituency.
Protesters spent seven months holed up in trees and tunnels at Mainshill Woods, near Douglas in South Lanarkshire, before being evicted by police in January.
Regardless of the debate on open cast mining, what is true is that Jimmy Hood needs put out to pasture – I turned in my Labour party membership after twenty years because of shiftless, lazy career politicians like him. He is a classic example of the class traitors Labour MPS, MSPs and councillors have become. They and their blinkered supporters wave “opencast – jobs” around without the temerity to imagine what new nature reserves, new forestry and nature reserve jobs could be created.
From the inception of opencast coal mining in this area, there has been no more than a handful of jobs available for local people. It is time the propaganda was exposed for what it is and put to bed. The landowner, the Earl of Home, wrote ‘When we were talking to Scottish Coal we did ask them to employ as many locals as possible and they do employ a handful. The problem is that equipment used on site is now very sophisticated and in many instances specialists are needed, who are not available locally, even with training. The huge earth moving equipment used nowadays, result that surprisingly few people are needed on site at all.”
Jimmy Hood MP said ‘the nonsense about opencast bringing jobs into the area is a myth and has long been exposed as such. Anyone who thinks that opencast mining brings long term and quality jobs into our area is stretching the realms of reality to its limit.”
There is a spirit of sad resignation rather than sheer anger in the Douglas Valley this week as Scottish Coal asked to be released from ALL limits on the time it can operate its controversial Mainshill opencast mine each day. Because of the mine’s close proximity to the Lady Home Hospital and the village of Douglas, an eight hours a day limit was agreed when the company was given the go-ahead to mine there over two years ago by South Lanarkshire Council and the Scottish Government. But as feared at the time the Mainshill workforce have been asked by Scottish Coal bosses to co-operate with their plans to expand the working day by a third, from eight to twelve hours daily.
Videos covering events at Mainshill Open-cast site just south of Douglas.
Mainshill Open-cast. Disgusting Behaviour of South Lanarkshire Politicians.
Mainshill resistance to open-cast coal mining in Scotland.
Stopping Work at Mainshill – Solidarity Camp Gathering.
The True Spirit of Black Douglas Lives at Mainshill Solidarity Camp.
Exposure of the open-cast expansion in the West of Scotland.
Loadsa information exposing the destruction of communities and open land.
Interactive map of lanarkshire showing potential open cast sites.
Adverse effects on locals.
Total Running Cost 2013-14
Office Costs £18,860.95 The cost of renting, equipping and running an MP’s office and surgeries
Staffing £104,484.72 Includes Marion Stewart Hood, P.A. Salary £20,000.00 and £24,999.99.
Miscellaneous Expenses £390.00
Basic salary £66,396.00
Other salary £14,727.96 additional salary for serving as a chair on a parliamentary committee or panel.
Total cost for year £236,344.78
Total Running Cost 2012-13
Office Costs £17,716.97 The cost of renting, equipping and running an MP’s office and surgeries
Staffing £102,096.25 Includes Marion Stewart Hood, P.A. Salary £20,000.00 and £24,999.99.
Basic salary £65,738.00
Other salary £14,582.04 additional salary for serving as a chair on a parliamentary committee or panel.
Total cost for year £232,164.37
Total Running Cost 2011-12
Office Costs £16,311.53 The cost of renting, equipping and running an MP’s office and surgeries
Staffing £97,642.70 Includes Marion Stewart Hood, P.A. Salary £20,000.00 and £24,999.99.
Basic salary £65,738.00
Other salary £14,582.04 additional salary for serving as a chair on a parliamentary committee or panel.
Total cost for year £212508.19