Belfast Telegraph

Under investigation DUP councillor made alderman

Trevor and Linda Clarke.
Trevor and Linda Clarke.

A DUP councillor, who is currently under investigation by the local government watchdog, has been conferred the honorary title of alderman.

The Irish News reported that the title was conferred on Linda Clarke at a meeting of Antrim and Newtownabbey Council this week.

Alderman is an honorary title given to councillors as a reward for their service. The title is not normally adopted by members of the nationalist community.

Mrs Clarke has also been appointed as the vice-chair of the council's Community Planning and Regeneration Committee after being nominated by the DUP.

She is currently under investigation for her part in a planning consultancy business run by her husband, DUP MLA Trevor Clarke.

Mrs Clarke did not notify the council of her involvement in the company, however the couple deny any wrongdoing.

She is also under investigation following allegations that she was involved in awarding more than £4,500 in council contracts to a printing firm run by her son.

AC Print, run by the Clarke's son, was given public money to create virtual graphics for shop fronts and buildings in Randalstown and was also awarded over £250 for the printing of Christmas flyers.

A DUP spokesman said that Mrs Clarke had already referred the matter to the Local Government Commissioner for Standards and was "happy for that office to carry out its work".

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