An Assembly Member has said it would have been “negligent” not to travel to the United States on a trip which cost the taxpayer nearly £8,000.
Alban Maginness visited Washington for a major US economic conference with an official in October 2010. The three-day trip cost £7,994, including £6,278 for business class flights. But Mr Maginness, who chairs the enterprise committee at Stormont, said the visit was value for money. “I was invited by the US Secretary of State to attend the economic conference which was organised by the American government in co-operation with the Executive,” he said. “It would have been absolutely negligent on the part of myself if I hadn’t accepted that invitation,” he said.