Status: A compliance audit was ordered on the campaign of Mayor Rob Ford. Mayor Ford appealed that order to the Ontario Court of Justice and subsequently lost an interlocutory motion and a request for a delay in his appeal. Following the delay motion, Mayor Ford withdrew his appeal and submitted to an audit of his campaign. That audit is expected to be completed in November 2012.
Fair Elections Toronto’s allegations against Mayor Rob Ford include the following contraventions of the Municipal Elections Act:
- Doug Ford Holdings Inc., the Ford family company, paid $ 77,722.31 worth of campaign expenses and then invoiced the Rob Ford Campaign. This appears to contravene section 69(1)(c) of the Municipal Elections Act, which states that all expenses must be paid by the campaign directly; section 75(1), which requires that loans to a campaign must be made by a recognized financial institution; .
- Rob Ford incurred $ 25,379.81 in expenses for an event at the Toronto Congress Centre, as well as $7,250 in staffing costs among other expenses, before he was officially a candidate. It is argued that this violates section 76(1) of the Municipal Elections Act which only allows candidates who are officially registered to incur expenses.
- It is alleged that Rob Ford spent more than the legal maximum of $1,305,066.65. It is argued that he wrongly excluded both fundraising commissions and direct mail expenses from his legal spending limit, and similarly excluded from his spending limit events that he claimed were for fundraising purposes when their primary purpose was to promote his candidacy, not raise funds. Had Ford properly categorized these expenses, he would have spent $156,384.35 above the official expenditure limit.
- It is alleged that Rob Ford received in-kind donations from Doug Ford Holdings, including an interest-free loan. This would be a contravention of both the prohibition on accepting corporate donations under section 70(7) and the requirement that candidates keep records of contributions in section 69(1)(d) of the Act. The value of the interest that should have been charged would increase Ford’s expenses subject to the spending limit and, as such, increase the amount by which he exceeded his campaign’s spending limit.
- It is alleged that Rob Ford received contributions from contributors that exceeded their $5,000 limit on donations to candidates running for mayor in contravention of section 69(1)(m) of the Act, which requires that candidates return contributions that contravene the Act.
- It is alleged that Rob Ford contravened section 78(1) of the Act by submitting an incorrect financial statement.
Rob Ford’s response to audit application, May 11, 2011
Decision of Justice Schneider on interlocutory motion of Rob Ford, February 23, 2012
Affidavit of Adam Chaleff-Freudenthaler on Ford delay motion, March 27, 2012