Decision Summaries

 

 

 

Public Sector and MPP Accountability and Transparency Act

The MPP and Public Sector Accountability and Transparency Act, also known as Bill 8, has been in the news a lot. While the bill does not affect the Conflict of Interest Commissioner, it introduces several changes to the accountability framework for the Government of Ontario. The Act received Royal Assent on December 11. Different parts of the Act will be brought into force over time by proclamation.

Among other things, the new Act gives the government the authority to establish compensation frameworks for agency executives, requires certain agencies to publish business plans and other documents, requires Cabinet ministers, parliamentary assistants, opposition leaders and their staff to publish expenses, establishes a patient ombudsman, prohibits the willful concealment, alteration or destruction of public records, expands the investigatory power of the Integrity Commissioner, and extends the jurisdiction of the provincial Ombudsman into the broader public sector.

Click here for the government’s official media release.

Click here to view the bill and its commentary.

Municipal Integrity Commissioners

Inquiries or concerns regarding the ethical conduct of municipal officials and employees or the rules and processes applicable to them should be directed to the municipality. A number of municipalities have integrity commissioners in place who may be able to assist.

The Association of Municipal Clerks and Treasurers of Ontario (AMCTO) maintains a list of municipal integrity commissioners. The list is was completed as of September, 2014, might not be 100% accurate and is of course subject to change.

The AMCTO list can be viewed here.

 

Sidney B.Linden

Sidney B. Linden was appointed Ontario’s first full-time Conflict of Interest Commissioner in July, 2007. In February, 2015, he was appointed to the Order of Ontario, which is the province’s highest official honour, and in July, 2016, he was appointed a Member of the Order of Canada.

He was Chief Justice of the Ontario Court of Justice from 1990 to 1999. During that time, he was Co-Chair of the Ontario Judicial Council and a member of the Board of Directors of the National Judicial Institute and of the Canadian Council of Chief Judges. In 1997, Commissioner Linden was awarded the Justice Medal by the Canadian Institute for the Administration of Justice.

Commissioner Linden has also served as the Chair of the Board of Legal Aid Ontario (1999-2004) and Commissioner of the Ipperwash Public Inquiry (2004-2007).

In 1987, Commissioner Linden was appointed Ontario’s first Information and Privacy Commissioner. He was responsible for establishing the agency and served as Commissioner until April 1990.

Between 1985 and 1987, Commissioner Linden was Executive Director of the Canadian Auto Workers (CAW – now Unifor) Prepaid Legal Services Plan. This plan was funded by the major automobile companies and was the first privately funded national prepaid legal service plan in Canada.

Between 1980 and 1985, he was the first Police Complaints Commissioner for Metropolitan Toronto and Chairman of the Police Complaints Board.

Commissioner Linden graduated from the University of Toronto Law School and was called to the Bar of Ontario in 1966. He was in private practice until 1980.

My Ethics Executive

Each current and former public servant has an ethics executive:

Current/Former Public Servant Ethics Executive
Ministry employees Deputy minister
Ministers’ staff Integrity Commissioner
Deputy ministers Secretary of Cabinet
Secretary of the Cabinet Conflict of Interest Commissioner
Former ministry employees Public Service Commission
Former deputy ministers Conflict of Interest Commissioner
Former cabinet secretaries Conflict of Interest Commissioner
Chairs of public bodies Conflict of Interest Commissioner
Public body appointees Chair of public body
Public body employees Chair of public body or the person prescribed in O. Reg. 147/10
Persons listed in O. Reg. 147/10 Conflict of Interest Commissioner
Former public body employees and appointees Conflict of Interest Commissioner
Conflict of Interest Commissioner Integrity Commissioner

As the ethics executive for the public servants shown in the list above, the Conflict of Interest Commissioner has the following responsibilities:

  • Ensuring that public servants are familiar with the conflict of interest and political activity rules.
  • Providing advice to public servants about the application of the rules to their outside activities
  • Providing direction where public servants have an actual or potential conflict of interest
  • Conducting inquiries where public servants may have contravened a rule
  • Making determinations on conflict of interest and political activity issues
  • Authorizing requests to engage in certain political activities
  • Making a determination on the need to terminate employment if a public servant is elected to municipal office

Public servants and former public servants for whom the commissioner is ethics executive are responsible for seeking the commissioner’s assistance regarding the application of the conflict of interest and political activity rules.

Decision Summaries – Commissioner – Conflict of Interest

Decision Summaries – Commissioner – Political Activity

The Honourable Sidney B. Linden

The Honourable Sidney B. Linden was appointed Ontario’s first full-time Conflict of Interest Commissioner in July 2007.

Justice Linden graduated from the University of Toronto Law School and was called to the Bar of Ontario in 1966. He was in private practice until 1980.

Between 1980 and 1985, Justice Linden was the first Police Complaints Commissioner for Metropolitan Toronto and Chairman of the Police Complaints Board. Between 1985 and 1987, he was Executive Director of the Canadian Auto Workers (C.A.W.) Prepaid Legal Services Plan, the first privately funded national prepaid legal service plan in Canada. In 1987, he was appointed Ontario’s first Information and Privacy Commissioner. He was responsible for starting up the agency and served as Commissioner until April 1990.

In April 1990, Justice Linden was appointed Chief Justice of the newly reorganized Ontario Court of Justice (Provincial Division). During that time, he was Co-Chair of the Ontario Judicial Council and a member of the Board of Directors of the National Judicial Institute. In 1997, Justice Linden was awarded the Justice Award by the Canadian Institute for the Administration of Justice.

Justice Linden has also served as the Chair of the Board of Legal Aid Ontario (1999-2003) and Commissioner of the Ipperwash Public Inquiry (2003-2007).