THE Scottish Parliament shelled out more than £17 million in expenses to MSPs in the latest 12-month period. 

Expenses data for the 2020/21 financial year came to £17.3m and covered the period before the latest election.

The total, which includes staff and office costs, is up by 1.8% from the previous 12 months.

Holyrood adapted to make greater use of remote working following the first coronavirus lockdown, meaning MSPs could take part in debates and vote without being physically present.

The most recent year's data shows total expenditure was £17,288,534, an increase of more than £300,000 from the previous year.

The party leaders allowance increased from £36,873 to £38,778.

Expenses paid to individual members rose by 2% to £16,749,902. The bulk of this was salaries and pensions for MSPs' staff at £13,891,973.

However, spending on stationery and postage fell by more than £30,000 to £499,854.