Compliance Audit Committee – Board Governance Structure
Mandate and Responsibilities
The Compliance Audit Committee is a local board of the City that receives and makes decisions on applications for compliance audits of candidates’ municipal election campaign finances and any by-elections during Council’s term. The powers and functions of the committee are pursuant to the Municipal Elections Act, 1996.
An elector, who is entitled to vote in an election and believes on reasonable grounds that a candidate has contravened a provision of the Municipal Elections Act, 1996 relating to election campaign finances, may apply for a compliance audit of the candidate’s campaign finances.
An application for a compliance audit shall be made to the Clerk. This application shall be in writing and shall set out the reasons for the elector’s belief within 90 days after the candidate’s financial filing date.
Under amendments to the Municipal Elections Act, 1996, an outgoing City Council is required to establish a compliance audit committee before October 1 of an election year to address election financing complaints received after an election.
The Compliance Audit Committee conducts itself in accordance with a procedures by-law and is also governed by sections 81 and 81.1of the Municipal Elections Act, 1996. Meetings of the committee are to be conducted in accordance with the open meeting provisions as set out in section 190 of the City of Toronto Act, 2006.
The Compliance Audit Committee is responsible for performing the functions relating to the compliance audit application process as outlined in the Act. These functions include:
- considering a compliance audit application received from an elector and deciding whether it should be granted or rejected;
- appointing an auditor, if the application is granted;
- receiving the auditor’s report;
- considering the auditor’s report and deciding whether legal proceedings should be commenced; and
- determining whether to recover the costs of conducting the compliance audit from the applicant if the auditor’s report indicates there were no apparent contraventions and if there were no reasonable grounds for the application.
Board Size and Composition
The Compliance Audit Committee consists of 3 citizen members.
The Compliance Audit Committee elects a Chair from amongst its members.
Citizens are eligible for appointment to the Compliance Audit Committee, and eligible to remain on the Compliance Audit Committee after being appointed, if they satisfy the eligibility requirements for appointment as set out in the City’s Public Appointments Policy.
Under the Municipal Elections Act, 1996, the following individuals are ineligible for an appointment to the committee:
- employees or officers of the City; or
- members of City Council; or
- any persons who are candidates in the election for which the committee is established.
Any person appointed must agree in writing that he or she will not provide advice to, prepare or audit the election financial statements of any candidate for office on Toronto City Council or become a candidate in the municipal election and any by-elections during the term of Council that corresponds to the term of the committee.
Compliance Audit Committee members should collectively represent a range of expertise and be accomplished in the following areas:
- accounting and auditing – accountants or auditors with experience in preparing or auditing the financial statements of municipal candidates;
- academic – college or university professors with expertise in political science or local government administration;
- legal; and
- other individuals with knowledge of the campaign financing rules of the Municipal Elections Act, 1996.
Appointments Process – Citizen Members
Citizen members are recruited through an advertised recruitment process. The appointments process is conducted according to the policies and procedures in the City’s Public Appointments Policy.
The Compliance Audit Committee meetings are scheduled as needed when a compliance audit application is received.
Citizen Members: $350 per diem for attendance at meetings.