Ottawa, February 5, 2020
Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner Mario Dion today released the Peschisolido Report on his inquiry under the Conflict of Interest Code for Members of the House of Commons into the conduct of Mr. Joe Peschisolido while he was the Member of Parliament for Steveston–Richmond East.
Commissioner Dion determined that Mr. Peschisolido contravened subsections 20(1) and 21(3) of the Code by chronically failing to disclose his private interests to the Office. Had he still been a sitting Member, the Commissioner would have recommended that Parliament impose appropriate sanctions. As a former Member, however, Mr. Peschisolido is no longer subject to the rules governing Members of the House of Commons.
The evidence showed that Mr. Peschisolido contravened the Code's disclosure obligations when he failed to report to the Commissioner:
an asset well in excess of $10,000, in the form of a shareholder's loan;
a liability well in excess of $10,000, in the form of a personal guarantee of debt;
a change in his marital status and a statement of the private interests of his family member; and
a change of status in his corporation, the Peschisolido Law Corporation.
Members' disclosure is a key foundation of some of the Code's fundamental purposes, such as maintaining and enhancing public confidence and trust in the integrity of Members. Members must make complete, accurate and timely disclosures to the Office.
Under section 20(1) of the Code, Members must file a full, confidential statement of their private interests to the Commissioner within 60 days of becoming a Member. They must also provide to the Office this information for the members of their family, including their spouse. Additionally, Members must file a full statement for the annual review.
To ensure that the Commissioner always has up-to-date information regarding each Member's private interests, subsection 21(3) of the Code requires that the Office be notified of any material change to the information contained in Members' statement within 60 days of any such change occurring.
The Office upholds the highest standards of accountability in administering the Conflict of Interest Code for Members of the House of Commons and the Conflict of Interest Act efficiently and effectively.
Commissioner Dion does not hesitate to determine if a Member of Parliament has contravened the Code and to inform the Speaker.
QUOTES FROM COMMISSIONER MARIO DION
“The disclosure of private interests is essential to helping prevent conflicts between public and private interests. Disclosure enables me and the Office to advise Members on how to avoid conflicts of interest. It is a key foundation of some of the Code's fundamental purposes, including to maintain and enhance public confidence."
- “Meeting all of their obligations under the Conflict of Interest Code, including those relating to disclosure, is an integral part of a Member's role."
General information about the Conflict of Code for Members of the House of Commons, which seeks to prevent conflicts between private interests and the public duties of all 338 elected Members of Parliament.
General information about investigations under the Code, including how the Commissioner deals with investigation requests.
Members of the House of Commons must complete an initial compliance process that begins soon after they are elected or re-elected.
The Members' Compliance Status Report is maintained by the Office and identifies where each Member is in the initial compliance process.
Once complete, all Members' disclosure summaries and public statements made under the Conflict of Code for Members of the House of Commons can be viewed in the searchable public registry on our website.
The Office of the Conflict of Interest and Ethics Commissioner was created under the Federal Accountability Act. The Commissioner applies the Conflict of Interest Act for public office holders and the Conflict of Interest Code for Members of the House of Commons.
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