Glasgow Lord Provost apologises after outrage over expenses

Eva Bolander. Picture: PA
Eva Bolander. Picture: PA
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Glasgow's Lord Provost Eva Bolander has apologised and agreed to pay back some of her expenses after outcry over some of her claims.

Ms Bolander, also an SNP Councillor, acknowledged in a letter to her colleagues that some of the claims should not have been made, after a public backlash against details of some of the expenses.

Her letter to fellow councillors said that all claims were within the rules, but said that 'on reflection' there were items that she wouldn't have chosen to reclaim.

READ MORE: Lord Provost urged to resign

She wrote in the letter, first revealed in the Evening Times. "Although the spending incurred was within the rules, on reflection there are items which I should not have chosen to reclaim.

"I am sorry about that and I am in discussion with financial services to come to an arrangement to repay the relevant expenditure."

Ms Bolander, who is the 'First Citizen' of the city claimed £8,000 in expenses over two years, spending money on haircuts, coats, nail treatments, and over 20 pairs of shoes.

Her letter went on: "Over the first two-and-a-half years of my term, I have been proud to be able to open up the city’s civic functions to new groups and events; including volunteers, community councillors, LGBT Pride and Black History Month.

"It has always been recognised that the role of Lord Provost carries an additional cost, taking place as it does almost entirely in the public eye.

READ MORE: Politics briefing: Lord Provost slammed over expenses

"In submitting claims, I have always tried to ask myself the question, ‘would I require this if I were not Lord Provost?’ Each has been made in good faith and scrupulously accounted for, within the rules."

Glasgow Labour MSP James Kelly said: “The SNP’s Lord Provost has been caught red handed.

“It’s only right that she will pay back some of the money she took from taxpayers in Glasgow for trips to nail bars, hairdressers and department stores.

“It’s not only councillors that are owed an apology, the people of Glasgow are.

“There’s no way that Eva Bollander can continue in her role. She should cash her final expenses claims and do the honourable thing and resign.”