Calgary Coun. Joe Magliocca expenses delayed, referred to city administration for another look

Click to play video: 'Coun. Joe Magliocca owes another $1,200 to Calgary taxpayers: report' Coun. Joe Magliocca owes another $1,200 to Calgary taxpayers: report
A new report in front of the Calgary city committee shows Ward 2 Coun. Joe Magliocca owes more money stemming from questionable expenses over the last three years. Adam MacVicar reports. – Feb 15, 2021

A city report that showed Ward 2 Coun. Joe Magliocca owed Calgary taxpayers another $1,200 stemming from ineligible expenses has been referred back to the city administration.

The report, which was made public on Feb. 11, was set to be discussed at the city’s Priorities and Finance Committee on Tuesday.

But Coun. Diane Colley-Urquhart, who chairs the Co-ordinating Committee for the Office of the Councillors, requested the committee refer the report to Carla Male, the city’s chief financial officer.

“It is critical that we get it right. It is critical that I be fully open and transparent and forthright with Calgarians,” Colley-Urquhart told Global News.

Read more: Coun. Joe Magliocca owes another $1,200 to Calgary taxpayers: report

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Colley-Urquhart said she came to the decision to refer the latest information after reviewing a report on Magliocca’s expenses conducted by PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP, an external auditor hired to do a forensic investigation on all the expenses that raised questions last year.

She said she also looked into work done by the city solicitor’s office, the legal department and the administration working group assigned to Magliocca’s expenses.

“There have been many fingers in the pie, many people involved,” Colley-Urquhart said. “That’s when I started asking questions.”

The latest report from administration showed $3,300 of the $5,830.63 in hosting costs Magliocca expensed to the city between 2017 and 2019 were ineligible.

Magliocca had already paid more than $2,100 to taxpayers, leaving the rest of the tab of $1,200 to be paid by March 31.

Read more: Calgary city staff to temporarily oversee council expense claims amid wider probe

However, the report also shows that Magliocca paid back funds for expenses that were deemed eligible after originally being declared inappropriate.

In total, Magliocca has paid back more than $6,200 to the city and was ordered last November to repay an additional $2,700 for upgraded flights.

At the time, Magliocca said he was in the process of repaying the city. Magliocca has since refused to comment.

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These are all questions Colley-Urquhart said she brought to city administration after digging into several reports on the issue over the weekend.

“Give me a list of what Councillor Magliocca has paid back. When did he pay it back? What did it cover?” Colley-Urquhart said. “I also asked questions about the upgrades to the airline tickets. Has this been paid back? When was it paid back? Those answers were vague.”

Colley-Urquhart said with the expense scandal under investigation by the RCMP, there is a need to ensure the numbers being reported are accurate and were not defamatory towards Magliocca.

“If we were going to proceed with this report (on Tuesday), I had to be sure it was accurate,” she said.

A report on the issue and the latest ineligible expense figures is expected in March.

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