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June 6, 2006
Electronic financial filing system a first for Canada
The City Clerk’s Office in partnership with the Information & Technology Division, today revealed a new Electronic Financial Filing System (EFFS) to the Administration Committee. If the authorizing bylaws are passed, Candidates’ financial statements from November’s election will be available for viewing by the public and media next year once candidates have filed them with the City.

The EFFS is comprised of two main components; one which enables candidates to electronically complete contribution receipts, track contributors and the total amount of contributions received, and provides a new automated means for candidates to submit their financial statements to the City. The second part of the application provides access for the public and media to view and search financial statements and contributions online.

Last fall, Council requested that staff develop an electronic filing system as part of their consideration of electoral reform issues in response to the Toronto Election Finance Review Task Force recommendations. Should City Council pass the necessary bylaw authorizing the use of EFFS, the City of Toronto will be the first municipality in Canada to implement an electronic financial filing application for elections.

“This is a very exciting initiative that takes the first step towards improving the openness and transparency of the democratic process since individuals can now review candidate financial statements and contributor details online,” said City Clerk, Ulli Watkiss.

The EFFS is also an important milestone for the City because it is an application built by the Information & Technology Division that allows candidates to store their legislated information directly into the City’s secure environment, and follows industry best practice for security.

“The development of this application has also allowed us to define a security foundation that will provide the City divisions with the opportunity to develop and implement e-Service and e-Government applications to be used by the public,” said John Davies, Executive Director of the Information & Technology Division. “The EFFS opens doors to secure public access to many City applications.”

The application is now available in a demonstration format on the City’s website. The public are encouraged to review and test the new system. Feedback from the public and media on the search function and the user-friendliness of the system will be used to help refine the application.

Media contact:

Brad Ross
City of Toronto Media Relations
(cell) 416-919-6503



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