BARONESS Smith of Basildon rose to her feet on the floor of the House of Lords to question the cost of the alternative vote referendum.
Baroness Smith said: “To ask Her Majesty’s Government which bodies are responsible for meeting the costs of the alternative vote referendum in those areas that did not have any other elections; and what estimate has been made of the total amount of those costs.
Lord McNally (Minister of State, Justice; Liberal Democrat) replied:
“In the areas where no elections took place alongside the referendum on the voting system the cost of the poll will be met from the consolidated fund. The cost of conducting the referendum in these areas has been estimated at approximately £16.9 million.
“In areas where elections took place alongside the referendum we would expect that costs would be apportioned equally among all polls. This is in accordance with the provisions set out under Schedules 5-8 of the Parliamentary Voting System and Constituencies Act 2011”.