TAXPAYERS could be funding personal taxi bills for Glasgow’s elected members, a councillor has warned.

Labour’s Councillor Martin McElroy claimed Glasgow City Council officers refused to set up an audit into councillors’ journeys, despite it costing the local authority almost £5,000 across 2019/20.

Elected members are allowed to use taxis while carrying out official duties, however, there is currently no known system which scrutinises why each journey is made, leaving Cllr McElroy to fear public funds are being wasted.

He told the Glasgow Times: “If you haven’t paid your council tax or business rates, you would be pursued for years, and years, and years.

“But, if a councillor mis-claims a taxi and the council don’t have a system to check it’s claimed legitimately, there’s no recourse.

“When I claim for mileage or a phone bill, I have to prove I have to prove it’s for council business but it’s not the same if you use a taxi.”

“I can phone and say I want a taxi to Celtic Park and go to the football and no one would ever know,” he added.

Last month, an internal audit summary report revealed "serious” control issues with the council officers use of taxis, which costs around £6.9million each year.

The report recommended major changes must be made in order to rectify usage problems, which include records not being properly maintained and departments not following taxi ranking systems.

Cllr McElroy has called for a similar system to be put in place to ensure councillors receive the same scrutiny and the introduction of a retrospective audit to look at previous usage.

It’s not the first-time councillors taxi usage has come under fire.

GCC was previously forced to defend council leader Susan Aitken's use of taxis stating she was advice by chief executive Annemarie O’Donnell to avoid public transport she received death threats and was stalked Amanda McCutcheon.

A Glasgow City Council spokesman said: “It is not accurate to say there has been scrutiny of officers but not members.

“The Head of Audit and Inspection carried out an audit of the processes put in place by the council for those booking taxis. His view that those processes are not adequate was reported to Finance and Audit Scrutiny Committee.

“While the overwhelming majority of people expected to follow those processes are officers – and examples in the report of where processes had not been adequate related to use by services – these processes are also used by members, so the same level of scrutiny has been applied.

“A review of taxi booking processes is now under way, following the audit report – 
and any new requirements will apply to both officers and members.”