Wednesday 4 May 2011

Rob Ford - possibly illegal campaign finances

Citizens Call For an Audit of Ford's Campaign Finances - Torontoist
Excerpt from the above article:

Rob Ford's campaign might have borrowed illegally from his family's company.

Chaleff-Freudenthaler and Reed, like Lorinc before them, have seized on a particular passage from the Municipal Elections Act
that appears to forbid candidates from borrowing money from anything
other than "a bank or other recognized lending institution in Ontario."

Rob Ford's campaign, the complaint alleges, might have violated that
rule by allowing Doug Ford Holdings Inc., a company whose directors
include Doug and Rob Ford, to make $77,722 in payments for various
campaign expenses.

Doug Ford Holdings Inc. later invoiced the campaign for the full amount. So, no problem, right?

Not quite. There's a chance that the whole deal is still suspect,
because we don't know how much time passed between when Doug Ford
Holdings invoiced the campaign and when the campaign paid. The argument
being advanced by Chaleff-Freudenthaler and Reed is essentially that the
interval of time, however long, between payment and invoice means the
money was a loan. Because if you were to get a bank to front you $77,772
for any amount of time, they wouldn't consider it to be anything else,

The bank would also charge you interest, and for this reason the
complaint also alleges that Ford's campaign accepted an illegal campaign
contribution. That's because Doug Ford Holdings presumably provided the
money interest-free.

Chaleff-Freudenthaler and Reed interpret invoices filed by the
campaign to mean that Ford's people later arranged a line of credit with
TD Bank after meeting with a lawyer, which they allege is evidence that
the campaign realized it was functioning in a legal grey area.

Rob Ford's campaign might have spent more than the legally permitted maximum for the campaign.

Filing election expenses is a little like filing income taxes, in
that there are certain things a candidate can write off. Rob Ford's
campaign comes in under City-mandated spending limits if all his
writeoffs were appropriate, but Chaleff-Freudenthaler and Reed say in
their complaint they weren't.

The campaign classified $102,713 worth of direct mail, telephone
canvassing, and fundraising commissions as writeoffs under a part of the
Municipal Elections Act that forgives candidates "the cost of holding
fund-raising functions." The complaint's argument is that none of those
three services constitute fundraising functions.

Rob Ford might have spent money before he was officially a candidate.

Chaleff-Freudenthaler and Reed found a $25,379 invoice to the
campaign for use of a meeting hall (presumably for the campaign launch
party) dated one day before Rob Ford registered as a candidate. Spending
the money before registering, they say, would have been against the

Toronto Star: More residents claim Ford went way over campaign spending limit

1 comment:

Zorpheous said...

Hold Jabba The Ford's nut sack to fire!