State secretaries fail to pay services tax

Ten of the 15 state secretaries working for ministers of Sweden’s centre-right Moderate Party, the largest of the four parties of the government coalition, have paid for household services without paying the required tax, Swedish news agency TT reports.

Such transactions are currently a major issue here in Sweden, after Prime Minister Fredrik Reinfeldt’s state secretary, Nicola Clase, faced fierce criticism within a day of taking up her post, for paying some 6,000 US dollars for such services.

Clase herself was drafted into the position as a temporary replacement after her predecessor resigned after drinking while on duty.

Clase’s admission over the payments was followed by reports a high-profile Moderate Party couple – a member of the European Parliament, and a former Stockholm mayor – failed to declare wages paid for cleaning services at their home for 13 years.

Of the 33 state secretaries contacted by TT, 30 replied, with half saying they had used such services illegally.

Cleaning, nannying, laying floors and painting are included in the list of tasks paid in cash.

One secretary reported spending a total of over 9,500 US dollars throughout the 1970’s and 1990’s, tranactions about which the secretary says she has informed her superior,  minister for Employment Sven Otto Littorin.

Of the Centre Party’s seven state secretaries, one reported paying for household services without informing tax authorities, with the Christian Democrats and the Liberal Party each reporting two.