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Former Catholic Board chair appeals conflict of interest ruling Add to ...

The former chair of the Toronto Catholic District School Board is appealing a ruling last month that removed her from office for failing to declare a conflict of interest at a board meeting.

Angela Kennedy took part in debates and voted on motions concerning staff layoffs in May 2008 when one of her sons was a substitute education assistant and another had been offered a job as an occasional teacher. A Superior Court judge ruled on Aug. 19 that her actions violated provincial legislation that requires public officials to recuse themselves from votes that could affect their relatives financially.

Her appeal, filed Thursday, calls the judge's decision "unreasonable in all of the circumstances" and asks that it be set aside on the grounds that any personal stake she may have had in the outcome of the vote was so small it couldn't have affected her judgment.

She also asks to be re-imbursed for the costs of the litigation.

A trial has also been scheduled for Sept. 27th and 28th for Trustee Barbara Poplawski who is accused of making a thumbs-down motion during a vote in which she had declared a conflict of interest, which could be deemed a violation of the rules.

Both Ms. Kennedy and Ms. Poplawski are standing for re-election on Oct. 25.

The development is the latest in a string of problems for the TCDSB, whose powers are now shared with a provincial official after it was revealed that trustees were spending their expense-account money extravagantly.

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