Nova Scotia Journal

Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Douglas Ross is embroiled in a job-sleaze scandal

Douglas Ross

The Scottish leader has reported himself for undeclared earnings. While serving as an MP. Douglas Ross has apologized for not fully disclosing his MSP salary and profits as a football referee in his Westminster register of interests.

This included £6,700 for work as a Scottish Football Association match official. Douglas has now filed a complaint with the parliamentary standards watchdog. According to the SNP, the Conservative MSP is “knee-deep in the Tory sleaze scandal.”

Mr. Ross said in a statement first reported by The Herald newspaper that all of his earnings had now been declared following what he called an “error on my behalf that shouldn’t have happened.” An MSP who is also an MP receives a top-up salary of £21,490 per year.

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Douglas Ross, on both hands, has only been an MSP since May, so he failed to declare £10,745, six months’ worth of earnings. A further £6,728.57 in payments from 16 football matches in 2020 and 2021 went unreported. The RLNI in Buckie, Kieran’s Legacy, Riding for the Disabled, Moray Women’s Aid, and Shop Mobility Moray are among the Moray charities that have benefited from Mr. Ross’ salary.

Scottish Conservative leader Douglas Ross 

Since January, Mr. Ross has been out of agency due to an injury, and he has not directed any professional games since then.

The SNP claimed that the opposition MSP had scored its own goal. “It’s evident that failing to declare thousands of pounds from several side hustles is a clear breach of the regulations. But the bigger worry is that Mr. Ross isn’t working his day job.” Instead, he is skipped critical votes, including Tory’s universal credit cuts, to make more money working the concession stand at football games.

“It’s past time to call out Tory sleaze.” People in Scotland deserve better, and Mr. Ross must decide whether he wants to be a full-time MP, MSP, or referee.”

Mr. Ross welcomed a review of MPs’ second jobs earlier this week, saying lawmakers should not be able to accept money from firms that benefit from choices made in parliament. However, if returned to Holyrood in the Scottish parliamentary election, Mr. Ross, a listed MSP for the Highlands and Islands and an MP for Moray, committed to accepting only one salary.

Source: BBC News

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