Decision in Mayor Ford's appeal expected Friday
Chris Fox and Paul Johnston, cp24.com
Published Wednesday, January 23, 2013 3:21PM EST
Last Updated Wednesday, January 23, 2013 9:13PM EST
Mayor Rob Ford will learn his political fate on Friday when the decision on his appeal of a conflict of interest ruling removing him from office is revealed.
The decision will be available on the Superior Court of Ontario website at 10:30 a.m., according to one of the lawyers involved in the case.
Ford’s appeal dates back to a November decision, in which Superior Court Justice Charles Hackland ruled Ford broke the Municipal Conflict of Interest Act when he did not excuse himself from a city council vote on whether he should repay $3,150 he had solicited for his private football foundation using official city letterhead.
“This has been a cloud that’s been hanging over city hall and the city for far too long,” Coun. Josh Matlow told CP24 Wednesday afternoon.
If Ford's appeal fails, his seat will be declared vacant and city council will either have the option of appointing a caretaker mayor or holding an election to fill the seat.
Speaking with CP24, Matlow said he would like to see former mayor David Crombie appointed as a caretaker if the original decision is upheld.
Deputy Mayor Doug Holyday told CP24 he would be prepared to step in as interim mayor should Ford lose his appeal.
“Certainly I’d follow the agenda that we have,” Holyday said. “I’m anxious to hear, as everyone else is.”
Coun. Adam Vaughan said that while he was interested in Friday’s decision, he is also awaiting the results of a finance audit currently underway examining Ford’s campaign spending.
“Even if he wins his appeal on Friday, he could be kicked out of office in a few days because of the allegations around the fact it appears he might have cheated during the election campaign when he first won the election,” Vaughan said. “There are some very serious allegations around how he behaved in the election campaign.”
Matlow said that while he understands the frustrations of Torontonians regarding the ongoing uncertainty at city hall, things are running more or less the same as they always have.
“At the end of the day, we still have a council that meets and makes decisions,” he said. “The bottom line is the city is still running as imperfectly as it always has.”
Hackland’s original ruling would have seen Ford removed from office after a 14-day period, but the mayor was granted a stay of the order pending appeal.
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