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The suggestion late in the blog "Why not give [MPs] an extra $1m each to spend, but with strict conditions and accountabilities? This would seem like a win-win: MPs get extra cash and the credit for delivering the cargo, while learning at the same time the nature and workings of accountability. Citizens get to benefit from services provided by their MPs and thus begin to develop developmental expectations from them" merits comment. First, the author presents the idea in the guise of a new, 'creative' conjecture, as if a light bulb has just gone on in the development community's collective head. In fact, such discretionary funds have been around since the end of the 1980s. Over the five years of the 2007-2012 parliamentary term, MPs received about K27 million each in District Services Improvement Program funds, or about US$2m/year, to do just what is suggested. A lot of effort has gone into evaluating whether the money is spent wisely, with the overwhelming weight of opinion, both from international analysts and commentators from within PNG, concluding that there is rarely anything to show for it in electorates (=districts) and, worse, that the scheme creates harmful perverse incentives. Second, the 'strict conditions' have taken the form of the Joint District Planning and Budget Priority Committees, as set out in 1998 legislation. Reviews show that planning in the conventional sense is impossible, with district after district having rival sets of administrators, rival political factions unable to sit at the same table, and even JDPBPCs that never physically meet within the district. There is no M&E to speak of. Third, even if JDPBPCs sit properly, there is no win-win. MPs get a lot of cash and a few lucky constituents make off with free outboard motors, dinghies or (in one district) goats. The vast majority continue to suffer without safe drinking water, functioning health posts or elementary schools that have books or chalk, let alone desks or paid teachers. Fourth, MPs 'learning ... the workings of accountability'? I think not - 89 MPs get DSIP funds but a scattering provide any reports at all on what they have done with them, which they are required by law to do. Fifth, 'Citizens ... begin to develop developmental expectations from [MPs]'. Unfortunately, all that has happened is that crony contractors are the ones who have developed expectations - of being able to pocket fat cheques and get away with outrageous and non-existent infrastructure 'developments'. The blog suggests 'an extra $1m each' as if it was loose change. In fact it's not the amount but the priority that harms district development. The national budget is crippled by the MPs' demands to have their funds released first, so that one can visit program after program in districts, with budget lines set according to national priorities, that receive no funds at all, or a fraction of their allocation very late in the year. The effect of this on the morale of public servants in provinces is devastating. None of this is new. One of the saddest things about it is that all the scenarios are revisited year after year as if it was. Best John Burton, ANU