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U.K. Auditors Get Powers to Go Over Queen Elizabeth’s Accounts

The U.K.’s National Audit Office will get new powers to go over Queen Elizabeth II’s accounts, as part of legislation to simplify allowances to members of the royal family.

Since 1760, when King George III gave up the income from his estates in exchange for an allowance, British royals have lived off the “civil list,” paid to the monarch and some of her family. That, as well as two other regular payments, will be combined into a single Sovereign Grant under a bill published by the Treasury today.

The bill also introduces new scrutiny of royal expenses. The NAO will now report on the accounts to Parliament, allowing lawmakers, including the Public Accounts Committee, to hold hearings on spending. That means royal travel and dining could be publicly scrutinized.

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