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The McCallion Letters

Examining The City of Mississauga’s Council Code of Conduct. (Part 4) “providing persons…with an understanding and appreciation of the City of Mississauga or the workings of its municipal government”

January 9th, 2012  

This blog is a continuation of the following blog entries:

Examining The City of Mississauga’s Council Code of Conduct. (Part 1) Line by line, word by word. Pages 1 through 5 of the Code.

Examining The City of Mississauga’s Council Code of Conduct. (Part 2) “upholding both the letter of the law and the spirit of the laws and policies” Page 6 of the Code.

Examining The City of Mississauga’s Council Code of Conduct. (Part 3) Beware “community events”, “volunteer services”, “arm’s length”… Pages 7 through 10 of the Code.

Just a reminder that my goal is to go through The City of Mississauga Code of Conduct, line by line, word by word as preparation for future Council deputations.

Once again, I will cut-and-paste the City of Mississauga Code of Conduct directly into this blog entry and offer comment/criticism [bold italics square brackets] when the need arises.

Those interested in accessing the full version of City of Mississauga Council Code of Conduct April 2011 please click here.


The City of Mississauga Council Code of Conduct.

Council Code of Conduct April, 2011 (Page 11 begins)


Rule No. 3

Councillor Expenses:

There are a range of expenses that support a Member’s role in community development and
engagement activities within their ward. For federal and provincial elected officials, these
expenses are often paid for by Riding Association funds. Municipal elected officials do not
have this benefit. Subject to the Elected Officials’ Expenses policy, this section of the Council
Code of Conduct deals with community expense-events, will indicate allowable expenses for
reimbursement and provide guidelines for Members of Council respecting community
expenses related to a Member’s role in community development, and reflecting which
expenses are eligible for reimbursement from a Member’s office expense budget.

1. Raffle tickets, table prize tickets and other gaming tickets are not eligible for
reimbursement.

2. Sponsorship of teams or individuals, such as the provision of uniforms or equipment, are
not eligible for reimbursement.

3. Expenses incurred by Members working during normal meal periods serve a legitimate
public duty purpose, provided that the expenses incurred are reasonable and appropriate in
the circumstances. Reasonable and appropriate expenses are those that are incurred for an
official duty or function; are modest and represent the prudent use of public funds; and do
not involve the purchase of alcoholic beverages.

4. Official duties or functions include those activities that are reasonably related to a
Member’s office, and must take into consideration the different interests, the diverse
profiles of their wards, their different roles on committees, agencies, boards and
commissions. Municipal elected officials will be expected or required to extend hospitality
to external parties as part of their official duties and functions, and it is legitimate for
expenses to be incurred for this purpose. It is legitimate for Members to incur hospitality
expenses for meetings that include:

a. engaging representatives of other levels of government, international delegations or
visitors, the broader public sector, business contacts and other third parties in
discussions on official matters;

b. providing persons from national, international and charitable organizations with an
understanding and appreciation of the City of Mississauga or the workings of its
municipal government;

[With me having so much video, Freedom of Information and “workings” from the Mississauga Judicial Inquiry, I can only interpret Item b two ways. Either Item b is a lie and the City really doesn’t provide “persons from national, international and charitable organizations with an understanding and appreciation of the City of Mississauga or the workings of its municipal government” —or (horrid thought) the City of Mississauga does inform “persons from national, international and charitable organizations” about the City’s unethical corporate landscape of Fudge, Fabricate, Lie, Deny, Stonewall and that the “persons from national, international and charitable organizations” are okay with that!  Back to Page 11 of the Code.]

c. honouring persons from the City of Mississauga in recognition of exceptional public
service and staff appreciation events;

[Re: “honouring persons from the City of Mississauga in recognition of exceptional public service ” Here’s a fun way to spend a weekend. Scribble down the names of all the City of Mississauga’s “Citizens of the Year” hanging up in the gallery outside Council Chambers of City Hall’s second floor. (Say from 1980 to current) Google them, then examine all “Team Hazel” councillors’ election financial statements for 2006 and 2010.

Only then will you gain some insight into the deliberately deceptive silliness of the Code‘s references to “volunteers”, “volunteer services” and “campaign contributions”. Back to Page 11 of the Code.]

d. recognition events for various agencies, boards and commissions of the City;

[In yesterday’s blog, I alerted readers to the true meaning of “community events” —that the majority are simply political campaign events in non-election years. In Item d, the Code introduces the concept of “recognition events”.  The City of Mississauga’s “recognition events” are just like “community events” meaning “political campaign events in non-election years” except more lavish.

The best example of a City “recognition event” is the Mayor’s $350.00 90th Birthday Bash back in February 2011. Another would be the City of Mississauga’s Tribute Dinner to McCallion-Starr-Mahoney-Crombie-Team-Hazel supporter, Victor Oh.  Back to Page 11 of the Code.]

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END OF PAGE 11 OF THE CODE. PAGE 12 BEGINS

e. ratepayers associations, minor league sports associations and other community groups.

5. Hospitality expenses may be incurred while extending hospitality in the course of
travelling on a duty or function or as a Member of Council, provided the expenses are
reasonable and appropriate in the circumstances.

6. As community leaders, Members may lend their support to and encourage community
donations to registered charitable, not-for-profit and other community-based groups
monies raised through fundraising efforts shall go directly to the groups or volunteers or
chapters acting as local organizers of the group and Members of Council should not handle
any funds on behalf of such organizations.

Members of Council routinely perform important work in supporting charitable causes and
in so doing, there is a need for transparency respecting the Member’s involvement. The
following guidelines shall apply:

a. Members of Council should not directly or indirectly manage or control any monies
received relating to community or charitable organizations fundraising;

[Notice how Item 6 deals only with money to community donations to registered charitable, not-for-profit and other community-based groups, and not moneys/contributions that could potentially slip unnoticed into the Mayor/councillors’s war chests through (say) as the Code puts it so well, “services provided without compensation by persons volunteering their time”? Back to Page 12 of the Code.]

b. Members of Council or persons acting on behalf of a Member shall not solicit or accept
support in any form from an individual, group or corporation, with any pending
significant planning, conversion or demolition variance application or procurement
proposal before City Council, which the Member knew or ought to have known about.

[Oh MY! “ought to have known about”! HAHAHAHAhahahah! Sorry, can’t help it. “ought to have known about”? You mean like how Hazel McCallion “ought to have known about” common law?… Back to Page 12 of the Code.]

c. With reference to member-organized community events, Members of Council must
report to the Integrity Commissioner, the names of all donors and the value of their
donation that supplement the event.

[Reminder from yesterday’s blog and the Code‘s Rule 2 d. “services provided without compensation by persons volunteering their time”.  The Power of Team Hazel’s Incumbency comes not so much from money donated, but her “Friends of Hazel” and their incalculable “services provided without compensation by persons volunteering their time”.  Back to Page 12 of the Code.]

d. Where a Member of Council sponsors and/or lends support to a community or
charitable event, this Code recognizes that all donations are subject to the Elected
Officials’ Expenses policy.

[Oooo, We can all feel so much better nowwwww. Back to Page 12 of the Code.]

e. No donation cheques should be made payable to a Member of Council or to the City of
Mississauga. Members of Council may only accept donation cheques made payable to
a Business Improvement Association, charity or community group and only for the
purpose of passing the cheques on to such group.

[CITIZEN ALERT! Making “cheques made payable to a Business Improvement Association, charity or community group” ensures they’re tucked safely from scrutiny of any kind. Exempt from Freedom of Information. Example, any cheques written to the annual Mayor’s Gala spring immediately to mind. Back to Page 12 of the Code.]

f. Members of Council should not handle any cash on behalf of any charitable
organization, not-for-profit or community group, and should always remain at arm’s
length from the financial aspects of these community and external events. If a Member
of Council agrees to fundraise on behalf of a charity or community group, the Member
should ensure that payment is received by a means that does not involve cash,
including bank draft, money order, credit card or cheque made payable to the
applicable group or organization.

[See previous comments regarding the non-unit of measure “at arm’s length”. The only thing that Item f accomplishes is to remind Mayor/councillors to have someone else handle the money. Perfect example. Councillor Ron Starr’s annual, Starr’s on the Credit annual fundraiser. Now Starr doesn’t touch the money but his daughter’s company, Elegance on the Move does! So now you know what the City of Mississauga’s Council Code of Conduct means by “arm’s length”! Back to Page 12 of the Code.]

7. Nothing included herein affects the entitlement of a Member of Council to:

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END OF PAGE 12 OF THE CODE. PAGE 13 BEGINS

 

i) use the Member’s office expense budget to run or support community events subject to
the terms of the Elected Officials’ Expenses policy section relating to Community
Expense events;

[By now when you see “community events” you should automatically think “campaign events in non-election years”. Back to Page 13 of the Code.]

ii) urge constituents, businesses or other groups to support community events and advance
the needs of a charitable organization put on by others in the Member’s ward or
elsewhere in the City;

[Repeat. By now, when you see “community events” you should automatically think “campaign events in non-election years”. Back to Page 13 of the Code.]

iii) play an advisory ex officio, honorary or membership role in any charitable or nonprofit
organization that holds community events in the Members’ ward; and

[Again, translate “community events” into “campaign events in non-election years”. Back to Page 13 of the Code.]

iv) collaborate with the City of Mississauga and its agencies, boards or commissions to
hold community events.

[HAHAHAHAAhahaha. Who’d have thought reading the City of Mississauga’s Council Code of Conduct would be such entertainment! “(C)ollaborate with the City of Mississauga and its agencies, boards or commissions to hold community events.” That’s MYTHissaugaspeak for “conspire with the ‘Friends of Hazel to hold campaign events in non-election years, all in the best interests of the City (of course). Back to Page 13 of the Code.]


Commentary

By virtue of the office, Members of Council will be called upon to assist various charities,
service clubs and other non-profits as well as community associations, by accepting an
honourary role in the organization, lending their name or support to it or assisting in
fundraising. Transparency and accountability are best achieved in today’s era by encouraging
contributors to make donations to such organizations on-line through a website or where that is
not possible through a cheque made payable directly to the organization. Cash should never
be accepted.

[Regarding, the Code’s assertion that “Transparency and accountability are best achieved in today’s era by encouraging contributors to make donations to such organizations on-line through a website.” So how was making donations on-line directly to Michele Starr’s Elegance on the Move website going to best achieve transparency and accountability? Back to Page 13 of the Code.]

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END OF PAGE 13 OF THE CODE.

Next blog deals with the Code’s Rule No. 4, Confidential Information.

As “homework” for the Code’s Rule No. 4, Confidential Information and evaluating the Code’s reference to “ought to have known about”, here’s video of an April 14, 2010 scrum where Mayor Hazel McCallion tells the Traditional Media Snoozers, “Well, I don’t think there’s —today, I don’t think there’s nothing confidential. There’s absolutely nothing confidential. Freedom of Information —you can get anything you want.

I created that title back in April 2010 and for the most part, I still think that Traditional Media SUCKS!

Video: HAZEL MCCALLION / CAROLYN PARRISH “BAD TO THE BONE” CATFIGHT! (plus Traditional Media SUCKS!) (5:45 min)

Click here to go directly to the clip on YouTube

 

Signed,

MISSISSAUGAWATCH

 

ADDITIONAL RESOURCES

1. The City of Mississauga Code of Conduct April 2011

2. Canada in the Making Common Law and Civil Law

Canada has inherited two systems of law: civil law from the French and common law from the English. This page will describe and give the history of each system as it relates to Canada

Related essays on this site:
The Judicial Committee of the Privy Council
The Sources of Law in Canada
The Written and Unwritten Constitution
Representative Government
Responsible Government
Canada’s Constitutional History
British Common Law

3. Video of MISSISSAUGAWATCH’s first (meandering and unsuccessful) attempt to merge the Mississauga’s Council Code of Conduct with the Mississauga Judicial Inquiry’s “Ethical Infrastructure” report.

As I watched it today, I winced at how unfocussed this video is —just all over the map. But it introduces the vital concept of “sanitized” reports. Sanitized reports/documents/communication is the Key to Mississauga’s success. It was the City of Mississauga’s sanitization efforts that prompted me to warn people today with:

Be it a Corporate Policy, Corporate Report, By-Law, Guideline, those drafting it meticulously weigh every single word. No word makes it on to a City document without Staff’s carefullest of scrutiny. Yes, “carefullest”.

The City of Mississauga’s wordsmiths are especially fond of vague words, like “transparent” and “accountable”. Fact is, words can be so vague as to become meaningless, become atrocities —like “transparent” and “accountable”. Like “appropriate”. Like “subject to confidentiality and disclosure rules”. Like “Trust, Quality, Excellence”.

BEWARE of TRAPS in Mississauga Code of Conduct if filing complaint with integrity commissioner (7:34 min)

(Click here to go directly to the clip on YouTube)

“To regain her power, expect McCallion to essentially build Team Hazel, for next year’s election. Team Hazel
would consist of four sitting councillors and seven candidates hand-selected by the Hurricane, who back the mayor.”

—Ted Woloshyn, Toronto Sun

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