The rules that govern members’ expense claims are from the Assembly’s Guide to Members’ Allowances and Services and are outlined below. Rules governing expense claims made by opposition leaders can be found on the Integrity Commissioner of Ontario’s website (external site).
Hospitality in the legislative dining room and constituency office
Members are allowed to spend up to $750 of their global budget toward hospitality in the legislative dining room with the provision of detailed receipts. Alcohol is a non-allowable expenditure and would not be reimbursed.
Hospitality may be extended to a guest or guests and consumed in the constituency office. This includes working meals for staff. Reimbursement is based on detailed receipts.
Hospitality expenditures that are extended away from the constituency office are not allowed.
Members can host events in their riding, if the events are:
- non-partisan and non-political
- open to the public
- free of alcohol
Hosting can be shared with other MPPs, federal MPs, and municipal councillors provided costs are split and shown equally.
Event expenditures covered by the Legislative Assembly
Expenditures covered for hosting events include but are not limited to:
refreshments (coffee, tea, pop, juice, etc.)
- light foods (sandwiches, muffins, doughnuts, cakes, barbecue items, fruit and vegetable platters, etc.)
- certificate of insurance
- space and equipment rentals
The Legislative Assembly will not cover expenditures for constituency events if:
- any of the costs are shared or funded by a riding association
- a public or private organization has provided financial support or shared in the costs in some way
- any fundraising activities are held or monetary donations are collected
- the event is for invited guests only
- there is a cost to attend the event
Members can submit a claim for reimbursement for travel expenses within Ontario that are incurred while on business as a member of provincial Parliament.
64-Point travel system
Each member can use 64 points in the fiscal year. One point equals one return trip.
The system covers three types of travel:
- travel between residence and Queen’s Park
- family travel
- Assembly business travel within Ontario but outside of a member’s riding
Types of travel under the 64-point travel system
Travel between the member’s residence and Queen’s Park
The actual and reasonable cost of transportation between the member’s place of residence and Queen’s Park by scheduled airline economy flight will be reimbursed. Round trip air travel between the member’s place of residence and Queen’s Park is considered 1 travel point under the 64-point travel system.
Other modes of transportation
Travel between Queen’s Park and the member’s residence by bus, train, or personally owned automobile are not counted as a point under the 64-point travel system. Personally owned automobile travel is unlimited for members and family travel trips between Queen’s Park and residence.
Round trips within the 64-point travel system may be used for travel between the member’s residence and Queen’s Park by air, bus, or train by persons residing with the member in the following relationship:
- spouse, including common-law
- same-sex partner
- in-laws (mother, father, son, daughter, brother, and sister)
Designated traveller under family travel
Each member is allowed to designate one relative or non-relative who is not included in the above list as a designated traveller. Only travel to and from the member’s riding and Queen’s Park will be reimbursed to the member. A member’s staff cannot be designated as a person under family travel.
Assembly business: Travel outside the riding within Ontario
Members may claim the cost of up to 40 round trips in any year by bus, train, economy class flight by scheduled airline, or personally owned or rented automobile from their place of residence (riding) or Queen’s Park to any destination in Ontario while travelling on business as a member of the Legislative Assembly. Maximum reimbursement within any fiscal year is established, and reviewed from time to time by the Board of Internal Economy.
Members are allowed to claim accommodation per trip at government reduced rates, where available, to a maximum of 10 nights per year. In addition, each member is allowed to claim meals for up to 12 days per fiscal year when the member is on the allowed trips.
Modes of transportation
Northwestern Ontario travel
Members travelling between their residence and Queen’s Park are permitted to stop en route in the United States when flying to and from northwestern Ontario, provided the starting and finishing points in the trip are both in Ontario and the costs are comparable to travelling wholly within Ontario.
Travel via USA
Members living in communities that are adjacent to US cities that are served by direct airline to and from Queen’s Park may commence or terminate flights in the US city, provided the cost does not exceed the equivalent fare between the member’s home community and Queen’s Park. This policy applies only to travel between the member’s residence and Queen’s Park.
Bus or train
The actual and reasonable cost of transportation by train or bus between the member’s residence and Queen’s Park, within the member’s constituency, or for Legislative Assembly travel outside the riding within Ontario, will be reimbursed. The cost of berths, meals, and gratuities incurred in the course of travel may be claimed.
The amount of the allowance for transportation by personally owned automobile between the member’s residence and Queen’s Park, within the member’s constituency or for Assembly travel outside the riding within Ontario, is based on kilometric rates established by the Board of Internal Economy. The current mileage reimbursement rate for members is 44 cents/km.
Opposition leaders’ travel expenses
Opposition leaders may claim unlimited air, train, bus, and automobile travel within the province upon submission of receipts.
In accordance with S.14 of the Cabinet Ministers’ and Opposition Leaders’ Expenses Review and Accountability Act, 2002 (external site), leaders and leaders’ staff reviewable expenses are scheduled under the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act. Copies of these reviewable expenses, including supporting documentation, are also provided to the Integrity Commissioner.
Toronto accommodation: special circumstances
A member whose principal residence is closer than 50 kilometres from Queen’s Park may be reimbursed for actual costs of accommodation in Toronto if the costs are incurred due to special or unusual circumstances while on business as a member of the Legislative Assembly.
Urban travel for members
Members may claim the cost of parking, taxi, public transit, and tolls while conducting business within Toronto or another urban centre in Ontario if the member is on a Legislative Assembly trip or travelling within Queen’s Park vicinity. Members must request reimbursement for these expenditures on their monthly Toronto accommodation and travel expenditure claim.