*UPDATE* VIDEO: Mayor's Office Accused of Interferring With Appointments
In a new report from Toronto ombudsman Fiona Crean that finds that city did not follow it's policy in making appointments to agencies, boards, and commissions, the office of Toronto Mayor Rob Ford was also found to have interfered with the process.
In the report, Crean says staff were left with little time to scrutinize applicants because an accelerated timeline was requested by the mayor's office, after first showing little interest in developing a schedule.
That left staff without the necessary time to scrutinize applicants.
The Mayor's office was also found to have requested to have a line about encouraging diverse applications removed from an advertisements.
In Crean's report she finds that Ford's office also requested that the advertisement not be placed in the Toronto Star, despite having the largest circulation in the GTA.
The Mayor spoke to the issue at a groundbreaking for the new Pan Am Games Aquatics Centre in Scarborough.
"I didn't interfere in any process," says Ford. "I actually cleaned up the process we had before. It's very clean above board transparent process and it went very well."
Asked about the removal of a line related to diversity Ford said he did not order that.
"That's city staff," says Ford. "They briefed me yesterday and it was the staff that didn't reach out in terms of diversity. That wasn't my staff."
When asked if he was against diversity, Rob Ford threw his head back and laughed, before shaking his head and walking away.
"The fact that the mayors office was so heavily engaged in sculpting the process, in corrupting the process, and in driving the process to a certain set of conclusions, is a very disturbing set of findings," says councillor Adam Vaughan.