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Key Vote: Election Finance Reform

A motion voting on whether or not to ban corporate and union donations from making municipal campaign contributions was a key part of the election finance reforms passed by City Council in September 2004. Councillor Howard Moscoe, one of the main opponents of election finance reform, made a motion that would maintain the current system where corporations and unions could make campaign donations, but would only limit the amount that could be donated.

As VoteToronto's Follow the Money analysis has shown, organizations that make the most donations to candidates are those who are most affected by decisions made by City Council, including companies that do business with the city, unions who negotiate their contracts with the city, developers whose projects are affected by city regulations, and so on. Banning corporate and union donations thus limits the influence that these organizations can have on City Hall.

As a result of the successful vote, the election finance reforms are now in the hands of the provincial government. Through this vote, the city has requested the Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing to make changes to the Municipal Elections Act, the legislation that governs elections for Ontario cities.

For more information, please see the VoteToronto Election Finance Reform page.

Vote Essentials:
That council restrict election donors to individuals, banning corporations and trade unions from making campaign donations.

Voting AGAINST corporate and union donations: 27
Carroll, Cho, Chow, Cowbourne, Davis, De Baeremaeker, Del Grande, Feldman, Filion, Fletcher, Holyday, Jenkins, McConnell, Mihevc, Miller, Minnan-Wong, Nunziata, Ootes, Palacio, Pantalone, Pitfield, Shiner, Soknacki, Stintz, Thompson, Walker, Watson.

Voting FOR corporate and union donations: 16
Altobello, Ashton, Augimeri, Bussin, Di Giorgio, Giambrone, Grimes, Hall, Kelly, Li Preti, Lindsay Luby, Mammoliti, Milczyn, Moscoe, Rae, Saundercook.

Vote Date: September 30, 2004

Vote Specifics: Part (2) of motion (a) by Councillor Moscoe, Policy and Finance Committee Report 7, Clause 3, headed “Toronto Election Finance Review Task Force Recommendations”.

For more information, see the City Council Minutes, pages 24 to 40. (PDF file opens in a new window.)