Scarborough councillor hits out at Council Leader over £2,000 travel bill for Paris trip

Councillor Donohue-Moncrieff questioned Councillor Bastiman's expensive travel bill
Councillor Donohue-Moncrieff questioned Councillor Bastiman's expensive travel bill

A Scarborough Borough Councillor has asked the Leader of the Council to justify more than £2,000 being spent on a trip to Paris.

During yesterday’s full council meeting, Councillor Michelle Donohue-Moncrieff addressed Councillor Derek Bastiman to question the expensive travel bill.

She said: "Can the leader justify why he required himself, the Chief Executive and two other individuals from SBC to travel to Paris to be the guests of Welcome to Yorkshire at a Tour de France finish at a cost of £2,319?

"As to why you took four people, in the words of Kylie Minogue, je ne sais pas pourquoi."

Also questioned by the councillor was Cllr Bastiman’s decision to accept hospitality from a gambling company at York races.

She said: “Given the immense damage caused by gambling in our borough, does he not think that it sends an awful message?”

Cllr Bastiman did not justify the cost of travelling Paris. However, he said these activities were a "fundamental part" of his and the Chief Executive's roles and should not be discussed in a full council meeting.

He said: "The position of leader and Chief Executive regularly requires them to attend a range of events in an ambassadorial or social capacity to promote the interests of the borough and develop relationships that often result in economic investment.

"These activities are a fundamental part of these roles and therefore there is no requirement or expectation to report such activities to a meeting of full council."

In response to the latter accusation Mr Bastiman only said: "As leader, Chief Executive or Mayor we make a lot of decisions. We make decisions on whether to open shops, parks, public houses but that doesn't make us alcoholics."