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Councillor Giorigio Mammoliti : Stop the secrecy on failed land deal

May 3rd, 2018 | by Richard Paul
Councillor Giorigio Mammoliti : Stop the secrecy on failed land deal
Business and Finance
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Stop the secrecy on failed land deal

Councillor Giorigio Mammoliti must be open and transparent about a failed land deal he promoted that is now under investigation by the OPP. Council, too, must release a secret report on how the deal almost went down.

York West Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti must come clean about a failed land deal in his ward that he was involved in.
York West Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti must come clean about a failed land deal in his ward that he was involved in.  (BERNARD WEIL / TORONTO STAR)

Toronto residents could be forgiven if their eyes glazed over at yet another revelation about a failed Toronto Parking Authority land deal promoted by Councillor Giorgio Mammoliti.

After all, the proposed transaction — which would have have seen the city overpay for a plot of North York land in Mammoliti’s Ward 7 by $2.63 million — has more twists and turns than a game of Snakes and Ladders.

It took the city’s auditor general Beverly Romeo-Beehler, 10 months of investigating before she concluded the deal resulted from from a “hairball” of relationships and potential conflicts involving Mammoliti, the local business improvement association, a lobbyist, a sign consultant, and two parking authority executives who were fired in April.

Not satisfied, the city hired Torys LLP to investigate the now-cancelled deal and, not surprisingly, Mammoliti doesn’t look good in that report, either.

It says that Mammoliti “made express and direct threats” to a city staff member while advocating for the land deal in his ward.

It also says Mammoliti refused to be interviewed by Torys investigators unless they paid his legal fees or sent him questions in advance.

This is ridiculous. Mammoliti is already being paid by taxpayers. He should want to be forthcoming about all the business dealings he undertakes as an elected official.

After two years of this ongoing saga, which is now being investigated by the Ontario Provincial Police, it’s time for Mammoliti to clearly explain his role in this mess. He does, after all, answer to constituents.

For its part, council should also be more transparent by making public the secret Torys report, which the Star’s Jennifer Pagliaro obtained and reported on this week.

As Councillor Josh Matlow said last summer: “We have a situation here that just smells.”

Agreed.pagliaro.jpg.size-custom-crop.1086x0

It’s time both Mammoliti and council cleared the air for good on how this bad deal almost went down. Voters deserve the unvarnished truth.

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