A councillor claimed she could not look voters in the eye if she backed a plan to relocate the council chamber at a cost of £850,000.
Heather Stewart was one of the councillors who voiced their opposition to borrowing the money to have the chambers moved from the fourth floor at 2 High Street to the ground floor.
Administration leader Ian Miller recommended councillors endorse the move while the building is being refurbished, or face having to spend more at a later date.
“The present set-up of holding council meetings on the fourth floor, at the end of a long corridor, creates both logistical and security issues for us,” said Mr Miller.
“In my view the new proposal of holding meetings on the ground floor, adjacent to a large civic area and just inside the main entrance to the council building, solves these problems at a stroke.”
Councillor Lewis Simpson said it was unfortunate a detailed breakdown of the £850,000 cost was not available to allow a greater understanding of the project.
He said greater information would have been helpful in justifying the expense.
The project was revealed last week when businesswoman Kairen Ruse accused the council of pursuing a “vanity project”.
At Wednesday’s meeting Councillor Willie Robertson said when he first saw the figure he “thought it was a mistake”.
In support of the plan, Councillor Alan Grant said it was important that the council offices were “modernised and rejuvenated” and said disabled access was currently woeful and to move the chambers would “make the democratic process open and accountable”.
Councillor Alexander Stewart moved that the chamber plan be rejected, saying the money spent servicing the debt could be “better channelled to the delivery of services to the residents of Perth and Kinross”.
“The public will not forgive us if we spend this money,” he added.
Councillor Willie Wilson described the current set up as “shambolic” and said for people with a physical or visual disability it was like negotiating a “labyrinth”.
He also said security was about as good as “a cardboard box”, a theme expanded by Councillor Archie MacLellan who said it was wrong to think violence only happened elsewhere and said “it could happen in Perth tomorrow”.
Mr Miller said that members of the different political parties had raised no objections at earlier meetings and he was surprised that Mr Stewart should move his motion, accusing him of pursuing “cheap publicity”.
By a vote of 28 to eight the councillors agreed to moving the council chambers at 2 High Street.