Tory councillor wins seat but refuses to take it up
A by-election will be held in North Lanarkshire, costing taxpayers around £25,000.
A Conservative candidate who won a council seat in May has refused to take up the job, STV News has learned.
Sandy Thornton was elected to serve on North Lanarkshire Council after he won a seat in the Fortissat ward.
Following May's election, Mr Thornton has declined to sign the official paperwork needed to become a councillor.
STV News understands Mr Thornton did not attend the election count or even have his official council photograph taken.
A by-election will now be held on September 7. The local poll is estimated to cost taxpayers around £25,000.
A party spokesman said: "Sandy has decided he is unable to fulfil the role of a councillor due to ill health."
SNP councillor for Fortissat, Tommy Cochrane, said: "This is a slap in the face of people in my ward who voted in good faith in May, only to find out the Tory candidate had no intention of representing them on the council.
"They should also apologise to the people of Fortissat for fielding a candidate and asking them to vote for him, all the while knowing that he had no desire to represent this community."
STV News has approached Mr Thornton for comment.