10/12/2013 15:52 EDT | Updated 12/12/2013 05:12 EST

Côté sanctioned for robocalls

Quebec's chief returning officer has sanctioned Montreal mayoralty candidate Marcel Côté over his party's use of robocalls.

Côté's campaign made a number of automated calls targeting Richard Bergeron's Projet Montréal party that did not identify the official agent of the candidate or the party behind the ads.

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Denis Dion, the spokesman for the director general of elections, said both are mandatory conditions under the province's electoral laws

Normally, candidates who receive a minimum of 15 per cent of the vote are entitled to have 70 per cent of their election expenses reimbursed.

Dion said Côté will not be allowed a full refund for the $1,300 call expenses.  

“We decided that it was non-conforming publicity, which means that it won't be reimbursed at the rate of 70 per cent after the election period,” said Dion.

Côté said the calls stopped once he realized the mistake, though Dion says the Côté campaign will have to list the cost of the calls on its official election expense report.