Feeds

Taxpayer coughs for AOL Connie's flat

Well connected

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk

Readers hungry for an IT angle to the unfolding MPs' expenses scandal will be cheered by today's news that taxpayers have been paying thousands of pounds to tart up a flat occupied by AOL Connie, the star turn in a famed series of dotcom-era TV ads punting dial-up internet access.

Connie was played by model/actress Rachel Willis, daughter to senior Liberal Democrat Phil Willis, the MP for Harrogate and Knaresborough.

Prissy know-all/viviacious and futuristic

Today The Daily Telegraph reports that since 2004/05 Phil Willis has claimed £12,653 in mortgage interest payments on a South London property that is jointly owned, and now solely occupied, by his daughter. He also submitted a £1,275 rewiring bill, claimed £2,150 for decoration and £1,036 for drain cleaning.

The flat was initially designated as Willis' second home, and occupied by his daughter "intermittently". In 2007 however he bought the neighbouring basement flat, which he then designated as his second home, leaving AOL Connie as sole occupier of the renovated first flat.

Willis then claimed £1,700 to decorate his new flat and £1,188 for a new bathroom. AOL Connie has joint ownership of the second flat, too. Which is nice.

As The Telegraph notes: "This means public money has been spent on a flat now inhabited by the MP's daughter, and on a property in which she has a joint interest. Rules state that members cannot claim for costs that benefit anyone other than themselves."

In response to the story, Willis said he would pay back any capital gains if the flats are sold. "At no time have I knowingly made claims that attempted to abuse the Additional Costs Allowance," he added.

According to AOL Connie was "a futuristic, vivacious character". Judges bestowing the ad trade mag Campaign's Turkey of the Year Award in 2001 called her "a prissy know-all".

Still, it's good to know that after she was given the boot in 2003 the rest of us were able to give Connie a comfortable retirement, no? ®

Reducing the cost and complexity of web vulnerability management

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
JINGS! Microsoft Bing called Scots indyref RIGHT!
Redmond sporran metrics get one in the ten ring
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Murdoch to Europe: Inflict MORE PAIN on Google, please
'Platform for piracy' must be punished, or it'll kill us in FIVE YEARS
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Found inside ISIS terror chap's laptop: CELINE DION tunes
REPORT: Stash of terrorist material found in Syria Dell box
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.