BBC Home > BBC News > Scotland

Lawyer to 'clean up' SPT expenses

17 February 10 12:33 GMT

A lawyer is to oversee the "clean up" of Scotland's largest transport authority after its chairman resigned amid an on-going expenses row.

Glasgow councillor Jonathan Findlay will take over as the new chairman of Strathclyde Partnership for Transport (SPT) from Councillor Alistair Watson.

Mr Watson stood down on Monday after it emerged SPT officials claimed more than £100,000 between 2006 and 2009.

Financial watchdog Audit Scotland has been asked to investigate the claims.

Labour councillor Mr Findlay, who works and a lawyer for East Dunbartonshire Council and represents Glasgow's Drumchapel and Anniesland ward, is expected to be appointed as the new chairman of SPT at a board meeting on Friday.

He will take over from Labour councillor Mr Watson, who represents the Craigton ward, after he resigned on health grounds.

It is understood that Mr Findlay's appointment will be secured at Friday's meeting with the votes of North and South Lanarkshire Councils - the two other largest authorities with representatives on SPT.

The row, which led to Mr Watson's resignation, flared after expense claims from SPT officials were reported following a Freedom of Information request.

Glasgow City Council leader Steven Purcell said Mr Findlay would make the necessary changes at SPT.

"I have asked Jon to take a firm grip of SPT and get to the bottom of everything that is going on there," he said.

"I know that Jon takes the responsibility that comes with public money very seriously and he will ensure that SPT spends its public money in a way that the tax payers of Glasgow will agree is right and proper."

Related BBC sites