PART A: INFORMAL
Any person or a
representative of an organization who has identified or witnessed behaviour
or an activity by a member of Council that they believe is
in contravention of the Council Code of Conduct (the “Code”)
may wish to address the prohibited
activity themselves as follows:
(1) advise the member that the behaviour or activity contravenes the Code;
(2) encourage the member
to stop the prohibited behaviour or
(3) keep a written record of the incidents including
dates, times, locations, other persons present, and any other
(4) if applicable, confirm to the member your satisfaction with the response
of the member; or, if applicable, advise the member of
your dissatisfaction with the response; and
(5) consider the need to pursue the matter
formal complaint procedure
outlined in Part B, or in accordance with another
applicable judicial or quasi-judicial process
or complaint procedure.
All persons and organizations
are encouraged to initially pursue this informal complaint procedure as a means of stopping and remedying a behaviour or activity
that is prohibited by the Code. With the consent of the complaining
individual or organization and the member, the Integrity Commissioner may be part of any
informal process. However, it is not
a precondition or a prerequisite that
those complaining must pursue the informal
complaint procedure before pursuing the
Formal Complaint Procedure in Part B.
PART B: FORMAL
Integrity Commissioner Requests for Inquiries
1. (1) A
request for an investigation of
a complaint that a member
contravened the Code of
Conduct or Sections 5, 5.1 or 5.2 of the Muncipal Conflict of Interest Act, R.S.O, 1990 (the “complaint”) shall be
sent directly to the Integrity Commissioner by mail, E-mail, fax or courier in
the form attached to this Protocol as Schedule “A”.
(a) Regarding the Code of Conduct, a request may be made by Council, a Member of Council or a member of the public.
(b) for complaints processed under the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act, a request may be made by an elector (a person entitled to vote at a municipal election in the municipality), ot a person demonstrably acting in the public interest.
complaints shall be signed by an identifiable individual (which includes the authorized signing officer of an organization).
complaint shall set out reasonable and probable grounds for
the allegation that the member has contravened the Code.
For example, the complaint should include the name of
the alleged violator, the
provision of the Code allegedly contravened, facts constituting the alleged
contravention, the names and contact
information of witnesses, and contact
information for the complainant
during normal business hours.
(4) The Integrity
Commissioner shall not accept any complaint from any person which arises from
the conduct of a member(s) that occurred, or such conduct was first learned of
by the complainant, six (6) months prior to receipt of such complaint by the
(a) For a complaint processed under the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act, the Integrity Commissioner shall not accept any complaint more than six (6) weeks after the applicant became aware of the alleged contravention (see 5(a) for exceptions).
(5) The Integrity Commissioner shall not accept any request for inquiry between Nomination Day (the third Friday in August) and Voting Day (the fourth Friday in October) in any municipal election year.
(a) Regarding a request processed under the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act, if an applicant learned of an apparent contravention between a period of time starting six (6) weeks before Nomination Day and ending on Voting Day, an applicant may submit a request for inquiry to the integrity Commissioner within six (6) weeks after the day after Voting Day.
(6) If the Integrity Commissioner has not completed an existing inquiry before Nomination Day in any municipal election year, the Commissioner shall terminate the inquiry on that day.
(a) If an inquiry is terminated, the Integrity Commissioner shall not commence another inquiry in respect of that matter, unless the person or entity who made the request, or the member or former member whose conduct is concerned, makes a written request within six (6) weeks after Voting Day, to commence the inquiry.
(7) The Integrity Commissioner shall complete an inquiry processed under the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act within 180 days after receiveing the completed action, unless the inquiry is terminated under clause (6).
Initial Classification by
2. (1) Upon receipt of the request, the Integrity
Commissioner shall make an initial classification to determine if the matter is, on its face,
a complaint with respect to non-compliance
with the Code and not covered by other legislation or other Council policies
as described in subsection (3).
(2) If the complaint is not, on its face, a complaint with
respect to non- compliance with the Code or the
complaint is covered by other
legislation or a complaint procedure
under another Council
policy, the Integrity Commissioner
shall advise the complainant in writing as follows:
(a) if the complaint on its face is an allegation of a
criminal nature consistent with the Criminal Code of Canada, the complainant
shall be advised that if the complainant wishes to
allegation, the complainant must pursue it with the
appropriate police force;
(b) if the complaint on its face is with respect
to non- compliance
with the Municipal Freedom of
Information and Protection of Privacy Act,
the complainant shall be advised that the matter will be referred for review to the City
(c) if the complaint on its face, is with respect to non- compliance
with a more specific Council policy with
complaint procedure, the complainant
shall be advised that the matter
will be processed under that procedure; and
(d) in other cases, the complainant shall be advised that the
matter, or part of
the matter, is not within the jurisdiction of the Integrity
Commissioner to process,
with any additional reasons and referrals as the Integrity Commissioner
(3) The Integrity
Commissioner may report to Council that a specific complaint is not within the jurisdiction of the Integrity Commissioner.
(4) The Integrity Commissioner shall report annually to
Council on complaints not within the jurisdiction of the Integrity Commissioner, but, where possible, shall not
disclose information that could
identify a person concerned.
3. (1) The Integrity Commissioner is responsible for performing the
duties set out in this Protocol independently, and shall report directly to
Council in respect of all such matters.
The Integrity Commissioner shall file an annual report to City Council
respecting the advice, education and investigations carried out in the previous
year, and developments or recommendations of significance related to the role
of the Integrity Commissioner.
(2) If the Integrity
Commissioner is of the opinion that a complaint is frivolous, vexatious or not
made in good faith, or that there are no grounds or insufficient grounds for an
investigation, the Integrity Commissioner shall not conduct an investigation,
or, where that becomes apparent in the course of an investigation, terminate
(3) Other than in exceptional
circumstances, the Integrity Commissioner
will not report
to Council on
any complaint described in subsection (2) except as part of an annual or
other periodic report.
4. (1) If a complaint has been classified as being within the Integrity
Commissioner’s jurisdiction and not rejected under section 3, the Commissioner
shall investigate and may attempt to settle the complaint.
(2) Upon receipt of a formal
complaint pursuant to the Code, and where the Integrity Commissioner determines
that the complaint meets the criteria to be investigated, the Integrity
Commissioner may elect to conduct an informal investigation or alternatively to
exercise the powers of a Commission under Parts I and II of the Public
Inquiries Act, as contemplated by Subsection 223.4(2) of the Act.
(3) If the Integrity
Commissioner elects to conduct an inquiry under the Public Inquiries Act,
he/she shall report to Council and seek instructions before proceeding, setting
out the reasons for the investigation and providing an estimate of the expected
cost and time that the investigation will require.
(4) When the Public Inquiries
Act applies to an investigation of a complaint, the Integrity Commissioner
shall comply with the procedures specified in that Act and this Complaint
Protocol, but, if there is a conflict between a provision of the Complaint Protocol
and a provision of the Public Inquiries Act, the provision of the Public
Inquiries Act prevails.
5. (1) The Integrity Commissioner will proceed as follows, except where
otherwise required by the Public Inquiries Act:
(a) serve the complaint and supporting material upon the member whose
conduct is in question with a request that a written response to the allegation
by way of affidavit or otherwise be filed within ten
(b) the Integrity Commissioner may serve a
copy of the response provided upon the complainant with a request
for a written reply
within ten days.
(2) If necessary, after
reviewing the written materials, the Integrity Commissioner may speak to anyone
relevant to the complaint, access and examine any of the information described
in subsections 223.4(3) and (4) of the Municipal Act, and may enter any City
work location relevant to the complaint for the purposes of investigation and
Integrity Commissioner shall not issue a report finding a violation of the Code
of Conduct on the part of any member unless the member has had reasonable
notice of the basis for the proposed finding and any recommended sanction and
an opportunity either in person or in writing to comment to the Integrity
Commissioner on the proposed finding and any recommended sanction.
Integrity Commissioner may make interim reports to Council where necessary and
as required to address any instances of interference, obstruction or
retaliation encountered during the investigation.
6. (1) The Integrity Commissioner shall report to the complainant and the member generally no later
than 90 days after the making of
(2) Where the complaint is sustained in whole or in part, the
Integrity Commissioner shall also
report to Council outlining the findings,
the terms of any settlement, or
recommended corrective action.
(3) Where the complaint
is dismissed, other than in
exceptional circumstances, the
Integrity Commissioner shall not
report to Council except as part of
an annual or other periodic report.
(4) Any recommended corrective action must be permitted in law and
shall be designed to ensure that the inappropriate behaviour or activity does
7. If the Integrity
Commissioner determines that there has been no contravention of the Code of
Conduct or that a contravention occurred although the member took all
reasonable measures to prevent it, or that a contravention occurred that was
trivial or committed through inadvertence or an error of judgement made in good
faith, the Integrity Commissioner shall so state in the report and shall
recommend that no penalty be imposed.
8. The City Clerk shall
process the report for the next meeting of Council.
9. (1) Council shall consider and respond to the report within 90 days
after the day the report is laid before it.
(2) In responding to the report, Council may vary a recommendation
that imposes a penalty, subject to Section 223.4, subsection (5) of the
Municipal Act, but shall not refer the recommendation other than back to the
(3) Council can terminate the Integrity Commissioner by a majority vote of Council. (Resolution C066-2022)
(4) Upon receipt of recommendations from the Integrity Commissioner,
Council may, in circumstances where the Integrity Commissioner has determined
there has been a violation of the Code of Conduct, impose either of two
(a) a reprimand; or
(b) suspension of the remuneration paid to the Member in respect of his/her
services as a Member of Council or a local board, as the case may be, for a
period of up to 90 days
(4) The Integrity Commissioner may also recommend that Council take
the following actions:
(a) removal from membership of a committee;
(b) removal as chair of a committee;
(c) repayment or reimbursement of monies received;
(d) return of property or reimbursement of its value;
(e) a written and/or verbal request for an apology to Council, the
complainant, or both.
10. (1) A complaint
will be processed in compliance with the
confidentiality requirements in sections 223.5 and 223.6 of the Municipal Act, which are summarized in the following subsections.
(2) The Integrity Commissioner and every person acting under her or
his instructions shall preserve secrecy with respect to all matters that come
to his or her knowledge in the course of any investigation except as required
by law in a criminal proceeding.
(3) All reports
from the Integrity Commissioner to Council
will be made available to the public.
references by the Integrity Commissioner in an annual or other periodic report
to a complaint or an investigation shall not disclose confidential information
that could identify a person concerned.
Integrity Commissioner in a report to Council on whether a member has violated
the Code of Conduct shall only disclose such matters as in the Integrity
Commissioner’s opinion are necessary for the purposes of the report.