Toronto Mayor Rob Ford
On Feb. 25 Toronto’s Compliance Audit Committee voted against hiring a special prosecutor to pursue charges against Mayor Ford for alleged election finance violations after an audit released Feb. 1 concluded the mayor had committed various apparent contraventions in his 2010 campaign and exceeded his $1.3-million spending limit by $40,168, roughly three per cent.
Toronto Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti
Councillor Mammoliti will be facing legal action over alleged campaign finance violations after Toronto’s Compliance Audit Committee voted unanimously to launch legal action against the councillor during a meeting on Feb. 4.
An independent audit of Councillor Mammoliti’s election expenses found that the York West councillor appeared to have exceeded his spending limit by 44 per cent, or $12,065 above the $27,464 limit.
If Coun. Mammoliti is charged under the Municipal Elections Act, which is a provincial offence, not criminal, he could face penalties including a fine or removal from office.
Toronto Ward 9 candidate Gus Cusimano
In June 2012 Toronto’s Compliance Audit Committee voted not to proceed with prosecution against former Ward 9 candidate Gus Cusimano after an audit into the candidate’s 2010 election expenses found several apparent contraventions of the Municipal Elections Act, including seven cheques that appeared to have been altered in order to meet a fundraising deadline.
Mississauga Councillor Bonnie Crombie
On Feb. 14 the Crown withdrew charges against the Mississauga councillor and former MP for violating election finance rules.
Coun. Crombie had been charged with 10 counts of election finance violations stemming from a 2011 byelection. Allegations included that she used signs from her federal campaign, accepted donations from outside the province, incurred expenses prior to registering as a candidate and failed to record expenses.
Former Vaughan mayor Linda Jackson
In 2011 Municipal Elections Act charges against former Vaughan mayor Linda Jackson were dismissed. She had been charged with 68 counts alleging breaches of the act stemming from her 2006 mayoral race, including that she had accepted illegal contributions, overspent the election limit and incorrectly recorded expenses.
Vaughan Councillor Michael Di Biase
In March 2011 former Vaughan mayor Michael Di Biase was cleared of Municipal Elections Act charges stemming from the 2006 mayoral race. Allegations included over-contributions by certain campaign donors during the election and failure to properly record expenses for a judicial recount of the election.
Less than five months later, in July 2011, Vaughan’s Compliance Audit Committee voted to launch an audit of the councillor’s 2010 election expenses after an application by a resident.
-with files from Torstar News Service
Findings of audit report on Councillor Dickerson’s campaign finances
- A $750 contribution received from the Carpet Corral was returned to the contributor subsequent to polling day. The contribution was not reported in the financial statement. Carpet Corral is a division of Dickerson Flooring Ltd. and is owned by the ex-spouse of Coun. Dickerson.
- Two $750 contributions from Rose Investments 1 LP and Viva Pickering Limited Partnership. The Act does not allow contributions from partnerships and requires the candidate to return the contribution as soon as they become aware of the ineligibility or pay them to the clerk, neither of which was found to have been done.
- Omission of $275 in office expenses for the use of a home office for a two-month period and computer use.
- Omission of the value of contributed goods and services related to old signs that were re-used in the campaign.
- Omission of the nomination fee paid by the candidate, which should have been included as a contribution.
- Exceeding the spending limit on total expenses.
- Inclusion of $14,954 expense for alcohol to be used in a voting day party but which was not used for the campaign.
- A payment of $500 to Lucy Campise, a relative of Coun. Dickerson, was deemed to be in contravention of the Act when no evidence could be found that the payment was made in respect to services performed prior to the closing of the polls.
- Payments under salaries and benefits, including $11,050 paid to Jo-Ann Kerr, campaign manager and spouse of Coun. Dickerson, and $1,500 to his stepdaughter Shannon Currie, were concluded to be properly included in expenses subject to the spending limit since the Act only states such payments be “reasonable”.
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