Clark's mayoral election signs are illegal, McHattie says

Brian McHattie has filed a formal complaint with the city’s elections office against fellow mayoral candidate Brad Clark, charging that Clark’s campaign has posted election signs too early.

Clark's team says they're in front of a house being used as a campaign office

Brian McHattie's campaign has filed a formal complaint with the city after the campaign for fellow mayoral candidate Brad Clark placed these signs on a lawn near the Winona Peach Festival this weekend. The city's sign bylaw dictates that election signs not be posted until 28 days before voting day. Clark's campaign says the home was being used as a temporary office.

Brian McHattie has filed a formal complaint with the city’s elections office against fellow mayoral candidate Brad Clark, charging that Clark’s campaign has posted election signs too early.

The Ward 1 councillor filed the complaint on Monday against Clark, who represents Ward 9 in Stoney Creek over signs posted on a lawn during the Winona Peach Festival.

According to the city’s sign bylaw, election signs can’t be posted earlier than 28 days before voting day on Oct. 27. McHattie says two large, vertical campaign banners on the front lawn of Ken Audziss, Clark’s campaign manager, violate that.

Clark disputes that, saying the home was a satellite office during the festival to coordinate volunteers and that McHattie's complaint is the campaign getting "nasty."

Paul Mason, McHattie’s campaign manager, said in a media release Monday that the signs “break the spirit of the law, and likely the letter of the law.”

“I’ll leave the ruling to Tony Fallis (manager of elections), but if this is permitted, it allows pop-up campaign offices to appear in any neighbourhood anywhere in the city, so long as a fee is paid to the homeowner and papers are filed,” he said. "The implications are significant."

“Knowingly either breaking the rules, or using a technicality to get around the rules, is not what we should expect from someone who wants to be our new mayor.”

Clark says it's standard practice for political teams to place signs and flags on a property to mark an event, and that all parties do it. It will happen again as he holds barbecues and fundraisers across the city, he said. 

"It kind of surprised me that political operatives were disgruntled," he said. "Perhaps they just had a bad weekend. We had a great weekend."

Comments

To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.