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Council / Council election candidates’ expenses published

EXPENSES returns show that the spend from candidates in the recent council election campaign stretched from zero through to nearly £800.

Candidates had a limit on the amount they could spend on their campaign, and they were required to submit a total of their expenses after May’s election results.

The highest spend by a candidate was £797.83 by Marie Williamson, who campaigned in the Lerwick North and Bressay ward but ultimately missed out on a seat.

Other spends at the higher end included £702.46 (Moraig Lyall), £685.60 (John Fraser) and £533.50 (Brian Nugent).

Both Lyall and Fraser were elected, but Nugent only received 26 first preference votes.

The cap for expenses varied between wards due to their electorates and size, but they ranged between £901 and £1,039.

At the other end of the scale Ryan Thomson and Andrea Manson submitted ‘nil’ returns, although both their wards – North Isles and Shetland North respectively – were uncontested.

The lowest returns beyond nil were £14.40 (Duncan Anderson), £19.19 (Tom Morton) and £76.85 (Peter Coleman). Anderson and Morton were both elected in uncontested wards, but Coleman missed out in Lerwick South.

Seven candidates had the same total – £361.73 – which was down to the price of printing 2,000 leaflets.

However, three candidates have yet to submit their expenses return, including Shetland West’s Ian Tinkler and Lerwick North and Bressay’s Stephen Ferguson.

No return has been filed by Peter Fraser, who appeared on the Shetland West ballot paper but had pulled out of the campaign early on due to personal reasons.