Eli El-Chantiry Municipal Elections Compliance Audit
There are serious issues concerning the Audit report that has been prepared for the Election Compliance Audit Committee relating to the audit of the 2014 Election Campaign of Eli El-Chantiry.
Draft minutes of one of the committee meetings, suggesting that the scope has been narrowed, and that the Auditor's will be helped to fully understand the Municipal Elections Act, hardly instils confidence in the Audit outcome.
"Member Vézina commented that the proposal has a narrow scope as opposed to provisions provided in the Municipal Elections Act. Ms. Donnelly replied that the preliminary meetings with the Committee approved auditor will help them fully understand both the Municipal Elections Act and the powers provided under the Public Inquiries Act."
That clearly doesn't reconcile with the advice previously provided to the committee by their legal counsel: "Mr. Duchesne replied that if an audit is ordered, it would cover everything; the Committee is not able to limit the scope of the audit."
The City of Ottawa is not willing to include my submission with the official public meeting notice.
I've uploaded my submission here, as I believe that this process should be as open and transparent as possible.
The Election Compliance Audit Committee will be meeting Monday December 14th to discuss the Audit.
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Thank you for the useful information John.
Based on the evidence presented in the Audit (of both Mr. El-Chantiry and Mr. Taylor), it was clear that the apparent violations were serious enough for the committee to pursue a prosecution and allow the courts to make the determination if a violation has in fact occurred.
I believe the committee was limited in their decision making process as a direct result of an Audit that appeared to be lacking, and failed to clearly identify a number of apparent violations, while glossing over others. The most serious being issue #1 in my submission, relating to accepting a donation that is not permitted under the Act, and then using those funds to fulfill another obligation under the Act.
The entire outcome of the Election Compliance Audit Committee is predicated on the Audit being a thorough and independent review of the election campaign finances of two candidates who are now members of city council.
I believe both the City and Province of Ontario have a moral obligation to ensure the integrity of the electoral system by launching a judicial review of the process.