2014 Candidate Financial Reports
The Municipal Elections Act, 1996 requires a candidate to file a financial statement with the designated Clerk that reflects the candidate’s election campaign finances as of December 31 in the election year. Section 88(9.1) of the Municipal Elections Act, 1996 requires the Clerk to post the financial statement – auditor’s report and related documents on the municipality’s website as soon as possible after the documents are filed.
An elector, entitled to vote in the election, who believes on reasonable grounds that a candidate has contravened the provisions of the Municipal Elections Act, 1996 relating to campaign finances may within 90 days of the deadline to file the financial statement apply for a compliance audit of the candidate’s election campaign finances. Information on the compliance audit process, including the application form, will be made available on the “Compliance Audit and Committee” section of this website prior to the March 27, 2015 filing deadline for candidates’ financial statements.
The financial statement must be in the prescribed form. To view the Financial Statement - Auditor’s Report prescribed for the 2014 municipal elections, click here.
For the 2014 elections, the completed financial statement must be filed with the Clerk by no later than 2:00 p.m. on Friday, March 27, 2015. The Clerk will provide candidates with a notice of the filing requirements by no later than February 25, 2015. The Clerk will also provide candidates with notice of the penalties relating to campaign expenses, including the consequences of failing to file a proper financial statement on time. To view that notice, click here.
A candidate whose campaign was in a deficit position as of December 31, 2014, can extend his or her campaign period by providing the Clerk with written Notification of Deficit and Continuation of Campaign Period by no later than December 31, 2014. To view the prescribed Form for extending the campaign period, click here (Notice of Extension of Campaign Period – Form 6).
A candidate who extends his/her campaign must still file a financial statement for the period ending December 31, 2014 but may continue his or her campaign for up to another six months (ending June 30, 2015) to eliminate the deficit. A candidate who has extended his or her campaign is then required to file a second financial statement reflecting his/her campaign finances as of the date the candidate eliminated his/her deficit or June 30, 2015 whichever comes first. This second statement is due by 2:00 p.m. on Friday, September 25, 2015.
Candidates who are unable to meet a reporting deadline may before the last day for filing the financial statement apply to the Ontario Court of Justice to extend the time to file the financial statement. The court may grant an extension of no more than 90 days.
Candidates are encouraged to talk to the Clerk as soon as they become aware that they will need to extend a campaign period or that they cannot meet any reporting deadline.
The key to successful financial reporting and defence of a Campaign Audit is attention to the rules around campaign finances and careful record keeping. Candidates should keep in mind the following:
- A candidate’s campaign period commences on the day he/she files a nomination paper with the Clerk
- A candidate’s campaign period will normally end on December 31, 2014. (Exceptions are for extended campaigns, candidates who withdraw or whose nomination paper is not certified by the Clerk.)
- A candidate is allowed to accept contributions or incur any expenses only during his/her campaign period.
- A candidate is required to open a separate bank account specifically for campaign purposes. All contributions must be deposited to that bank account. With the exception of the nomination fee, all expenses must be paid for from the bank account. (This is a necessary exception as the candidate cannot open the bank account until he/she has filed a nomination paper.)
- A candidate must issue fully detailed receipts for every contribution and value every contribution regardless of its form and even if the contributor is the candidate. The receipt must include the name and address of the contributor.
- A candidate is required to list the name and address of every contributor who gives more than $100 total to his or her campaign in the financial statement.
- A candidate must obtain a receipt for each expense incurred.
- A candidate may not exceed the Campaign Expense Limit for the office for which they are a candidate. The Clerk will provide the candidate with notices respecting this limit.
- Candidates must make themselves aware of the rules around who is eligible to contribute their campaigns and the limits on individual and corporate contributions.
- A candidate may not accept a contribution in cash excepting for a cash donation of $10 or less received at a fundraising event.
- A candidate who has accepted ineligible amounts or contributions from ineligible sources must return such ineligible contributions immediately he or she becomes aware of the fact. Such returns of contributions must be carefully documented. If the candidate cannot return the contribution, it must be turned over to the Clerk.
- A candidate must keep all campaign financial records until the next council or school board takes office (December, 2018).
2014 Candidate Financial Statements