‘Insufficient grounds’ for full probe into Ford stag and doe: commissioner

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Published September 21, 2023 at 1:41 pm

doug ford
Photo via Flickr Premier of Ontario Photography

Ontario’s integrity commissioner says there are “insufficient grounds” for him to conduct a full investigation into whether Premier Doug Ford breached ethics rules regarding his daughter’s stag and doe party.

NDP Leader Marit Stiles had asked Commissioner J. David Wake to issue an opinion on the event, which was attended by some developers ahead of the government’s decision to open several parcels of protected Greenbelt lands for housing development.

Wake says in a report today that there is a high bar in the Members’ Integrity Act for him to start an investigation on whether a member broke sections relating to furthering someone’s private interests and accepting a benefit connected with the performance of their duties, and the evidence in this case doesn’t meet that threshold.

A related report last month from the integrity commissioner found that the process of selecting lands for removal from the Greenbelt favoured certain developers.

In today’s report, Wake says it’s “interesting” that one developer who bought tickets for the stag and doe purchased them from Tony Miele, the chair of the PC Ontario Fund, the fundraising arm of the party.

Wake says Miele told him he sold about 20 tickets, but was acting as a friend of the Ford family and not as part of his party fundraising duties.

The Canadian Press

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