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Vagnini claims $13.5K mileage expense for 2022

At 55 cents per kilometre, Vagnini claimed mileage for 24,547 kilometres of city council business in 2022
Ward 2 Coun. Michael Vagnini is seen during a meeting with the Christian Labour Association of Canada regarding firefighter training last year.

Ward 2 Coun. Michael Vagnini claimed a $13,501 mileage expense for city council business in 2022.

At 55 cents per kilometre, the mileage claim accounts for 24,547 kilometres of travel.

The next-closest mileage claim in city council’s 2022 expense report is the $5,938 Ward 3 Coun. Gerry Montpellier claimed, which is the equivalent of 10,796 kilometres.

The balance of city councillor mileage claims range from Ward 7 Coun. Natalie Labbée’s $119 to former Ward 5 Coun. Robert Kirwan’s $3,492. Part of the discrepancy between expense claims is that an election took place on Oct. 24, meaning members are claiming expenses for varying periods of time (Labbée was newly elected on Oct. 24, so claimed only two months’ expenses, while Kirwan was not re-elected, so claimed 10 months’ expenses). 

Both Vagnini and Montpellier were re-elected to their respective wards, so claimed the full 12 months’ worth of expenses.

Vagnini’s Ward 2 is 797.6 square kilometres in size and located at the southwest corner of Greater Sudbury, while Montpellier’s Ward 3 is made up of 493.5 square kilometres of land at the municipality’s northwest.

While Montpellier routinely attends city council meetings in-person, Vagnini makes only rare appearances, instead opting to attend meetings virtually. reached out to Vagnini for comment, but our message was not returned.

During this time last year, then-Ward 4 Coun. Geoff McCausland flagged Vagnini’s 2021 mileage claim, which was $13,820. McCausland questioned how Vagnini travelled so much for council business during a year in which the province was under a series of mandated lockdowns.

During a subsequent interview with at the time, Vagnini explained that he drives to see people throughout his large ward on a regular basis.

“I’m going to constituents wherever they call, I’m going to their places and I’m addressing the situations,” he said at the time, describing these meetings as covering “any issues a constituent might have.” The example he provided is of someone’s basement flooding. 

He told city council at the time that he’s on the road four to seven nights per week.

Vagnini claimed $5,958.26 in mileage expenses in 2020, $12,681.76 in 2019, and did not claim any mileage in preceding years.

In response to last year’s mileage claims debate, Ward 9 Coun. Deb Mcintosh introduced a successful motion to have the city’s travel and expense policy reviewed by administration, with the resulting report to be presented to city council during the first quarter of 2023. 

No such report has been tabled, and it’s not on the agenda for the March 28 finance and administrative committee agenda, which is the final meeting of the year’s first quarter.

This year’s city council expense report, which is on the March 28 agenda, reminded McIntosh of her motion, so she looked into it. 

“It's been delayed because they're short-staffed in finance,” she told, adding that the department has had other priorities to contend with, such as the 2023 budget.

The report on travel and business expenses will now be tabled by the end of September.

The March 28 finance and administration committee meeting begins at 6 p.m., and can be attended in-person at Tom Davies Square or viewed virtually by clicking here.

Tyler Clarke covers city hall and political affairs for