The Mayor of Mississauga, Hazel McCallion, will be present in court this morning to defend a conflict-of-interest case filed against her by a resident, Elias Hazeneh, alleging that McCallion voted in favor of a 2007 bylaw in order to save an estimated amount of $11 million in development fees her son’s company. Court documents reveal that at the time, Peter McCallion, was approaching a deal for a hotel complex and convention centre in downtown Mississauga.
Hazeneh has alleged that McCallion voted to extend a deadline at Peel Regional council, to help her son in avoiding to pay a higher development fees. Hazeneh alleges that “she moved a motion to extend a grace period from 60 days to 90 days, which would have allowed her son to put his application in and would have allowed him to go under the old rates.” She added that “that would have saved him $11 million.” Additionally, Hazeneh claims that “the mayor was trying to enrich her son using her office, using her influence.” Whereas, McCallion and her lawyer have declined to comment on the case.
The legal documents presented in court depict that McCallion has strategized to imply that she was unaware that her son had a stake in the company behind the project. However, this argument has previously rejected by a judicial inquiry in 2011. Municipal lawyer, John Mascarin, claims that “a lot of people will be watching this, there’s a significant dollar amount at stake, unlike the [Toronto Mayor] Rob Ford case, which only involved $3,150.” He added that “Hazel McCallion has been the mayor for a long time so you have to assume that Mayor McCallion knows the rules under this act.”
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