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Integrity commissioner sides with mayor in dispute with Toronto Star

Mayor Rob Ford in this file photo from February, 2012. Aaron Lynett / National Post

TORONTO – The integrity commissioner has ruled in favour of Mayor Rob Ford in a code of conduct complaint brought forward by the Toronto Star.

In December, 2011 the newspaper filed a formal complaint with the city, claiming the mayor had directed his staff against providing the newspaper with official mayoral communications.

The mayor’s directive stems from a 2010 article in the Star which claimed the mayor had assaulted a student at an Etobicoke school where he coached football.

The newspaper claims that Ford also refused to provide interviews to the Star.

However, the integrity commissioner’s investigation found the alleged blacklisting of the newspaper to be unenthusiastic, and found Ford did not interfere with the newspaper’s access to city information.

One of the main reasons the integrity commissioner gave for siding with Ford, was that TorStar—the parent company of the Star—has access to city affairs.

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TorStar also owns several other media outlets in Toronto including The Grid, Metro and Sing Tao – whose reporters did receive access.

The integrity commissioner’s investigation found all of the bulk e-mail communication from the mayor’s office was sent to Metroland – one of TorStar’s subsidiaries.

The report will be officially reviewed by city council at its next session.

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