Report finds mayor’s affair with deputy mayor violated London, Ont. code of conduct
A new report from London’s integrity commissioner finds the “inappropriate relationship” between Mayor Matt Brown and former deputy mayor Maureen Cassidy violated three sections of the city’s code of conduct.
Greg Stewart’s report, released Tuesday night ahead of Thursday’s city council meeting, did not make any recommendations or offer up any penalties.
“The Mayor and Deputy Mayor have each, separately, disclosed that for a period of time, they together, engaged in what they have referred to as an inappropriate relationship,” Stewart wrote. “In light of this disclosure, I believe that to conduct any further search for details would be to engage in an exercise in seeking out the salacious details of the situation – an exercise which, other than satisfying curiosity, would serve no purpose.”
Stewart also wrote, “hopefully council and the community can get beyond the understandable immediate anger, outrage, and sense of disappointment” caused by the scandal and “get on with the business of the City.”
Stewart met with Brown last week after the mayor revealed he had an extramarital affair with Cassidy. The integrity commissioner is available to any councillors wishing to seek advice, though Brown agreed to foot the bill for the meeting personally.
WATCH: London, Ont. Mayor Matt Brown confirms ‘inappropriate’ relationship with deputy mayor
“He didn’t have to do an investigation of facts,” Coun. Phil Squire said. “He really just based it on the public statements made by both the mayor and the former deputy mayor that they had been involved in a relationship.”
Despite the findings, the integrity commissioner does not have the authority to remove anyone from office and can only recommend a 90-day suspension.
“He recognized that they may have caused irreparable harm to their political careers,” Squire said.
The report will only add fuel to the fire for those who think Brown and Cassidy – both currently on a leave absence from city hall to be with family – should resign.
WATCH: ‘I’m very sorry’: London, Ont. deputy mayor apologizes following affair with city’s mayor
“I think the decision is sort of up to them now what they do,” Squire said. “They’ve got to make a decision and they’ve got to live with the ramifications.”
Squire adds that he thinks both Brown and Cassidy should consider resigning in the wake of the scandal.
“I would resign,” he said. “I don’t want to tell other people what to do. I think they should seriously consider that, and I’m not saying that lightly.”
© 2016 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.