Leak councillor’s double punishment

North Lanarkshire SNP group leader David Stocks has accused Labour of being ‘vindictive’ after Mossend and Holytown councillor Paul Delaney received further punishment for allegedly leaking confidential documents to the Times & Speaker.

In September the Standards Commission banned Councillor Delaney from all council meetings for three months after being found guilty of leaking information relating to a council employee being fired for accepting gifts from a planning applicant.

However, at Thursday’s full council meeting business manager Michael Ross outlined the case to ban Councillor Delaney indefinitely from sitting on three committees - audit and governance panel, policy and resources (human resources appeals) and scrutiny panel - as they all deal with confidential information.

Councillor Ross said: “All SNP and Labour members have been on committees and kept the confidence of what was discussed, but since Councillor Delaney ran to the papers I think the best thing is to keep him away from confidential materials until he demonstrates he can handle them better.”

The motion to ban Councillor Delaney was passed by 36 votes to 12, much to the chagrin of Councillor Stocks.

He said: “This is a biased and vindictive move by Labour. Since October, Councillor Delaney has been serving a contested three-month suspension imposed by the Standards Commission.

“Now Labour has imposed a second punishment of their own. This vicious decision flies in the face of all natural justice.”

Full story in December 22 edition of Times & Speaker