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Resource ID: #25902
Source:CBC News (Winnipeg, Manitoba)
In late August, Sean Kavanagh was out walking the dog when he noticed his local fire hall looked abandoned. When he got home he discovered the property was being marketed by Shindico — a real estate developer that is owned by one of Mayor Sam Katz's business partners. CBC soon discovered the property was part of a land swap that saw three city-owned properties traded for the land under one of Winnipeg's new fire halls. Further investigation revealed numerous irregularities including the fact that the city built the new 3 million dollar fire hall on land it did not own; land that belongs to Shindico. At first, Mayor Sam Katz and chief administrative officer, Phil Sheegl were quick to state that the deal was by the book. They later changed their position after repeated questioning by the media. Further investigation revealed the city's Chief Administrative Officer, Phil Sheegl,sold an Arizona-based company to the Mayor in Spring 2011 and the mayor did not declare it in his statement of assets. Weeks later the CBC discovered Mayor Sam Katz had bought a million dollar home in Scottsdale from the sister of a Shindico executive. These three related investigations resulted in Winnipeggers calling on their elected officials to investigate the way our city does business with developers and ultimately resulted in an external audit of Winnipeg's real estate division.