A GLASGOW councillor has blocked the release of information about hospitality at City Building because he believes it will cause "negative publicity".

Labour's Paul Carey intervened to keep details of credit card spending by executives at the arm's-length external organisation out of the public domain.

Mr Carey, who has previously campaigned for the expansion of Freedom of Information laws, was responding to routine requests from the leader of the opposition in Glasgow, the SNP's Graeme Hendry.

His move came after The Evening Times revealed that City Building executives had slashed spending on credit cards from a peak of £122,000 in 2009-10.

That information, as we reported at the time, was obtained by Mr Hendry, who continues to battle for a breakdown of exactly what the money was spent on, including what he describes as the "wining and dining" of Labour councillors by the company.

Mr Carey, who chairs council-owned City Building, has now instructed the firm's executives not to release any more information until its board, dominated by Labour councillors, can meet to discuss Mr Hendry's request.

Normally such requests would be dealt with by politically neutral officials, not politicians.

In a letter to the SNP leader, Mr Carey suggested Evening Times stories on City Building were "damaging" and claimed our revealing of previous credit card spending was jeopardising jobs, including those of disabled workers.

He said: "While elected member enquiries are normally accommodated, yours appeared as nothing more than a fishing exercise without any justification, other than to feed the appetite of a journalist for another sensationalised storyline."

Neither Mr Carey nor anyone else at City Building or Glasgow City Council has complained about our reporting or suggested it was in any way inaccurate.

Mr Hendry today said: "This rather silly attempt to block my request for information is embarrassing and highlights the utter contempt some folk in Labour have for democracy.

"There is little secret that much of the information I have requested relates to the wining and dining of Labour councillors. "

Mr Carey hit back and said: "I don't have a problem with the media covering City Building's business because I am proud of what we do.

"I do have a problem with the way Councillor Hendry likes to talk our business down - and I feel it is important that I stand up for our staff and apprentices."