Finance Minister Mike de Jong

Finance Minister Mike de Jong

BC Liberals bag $10 million, refuse donor reform

Corporate donations more than half BC Liberal total, NDP's donations mostly small sums from individuals

After reporting $10 million in donations for 2015, the B.C. Liberal Party has no plans to restrict donations to individuals only as other provinces have done.

More than $5 million of the ruling party’s donations came from corporations, with individuals giving $3.3 million and trade unions chipping in just $23,800, according to filings this week with Elections BC.

The B.C. NDP collected just over $3 million last year, mostly from individual donations under $200, and banked nearly $1 million more from the sale of its former headquarters in Burnaby. Trade unions donated about $375,000 to the NDP and corporations gave $148,000.

With Alberta having outlawed corporate and union donations and Ontario moving to do the same, B.C. Liberal house leader Mike de Jong isn’t swayed by controversies in other provinces.

“The issue that seems to be at the forefront today … is whether or not we’re proposing or thinking about eliminating corporate and union donations, and we’re not,” de Jong told reporters Tuesday.

NDP leader John Horgan, who has criticized Premier Christy Clark’s private meetings with donors paying $10,000 each, has repeatedly called for an end to corporate and union donations. Horgan has hosted his own fundraising events, including a $5,000-a-plate breakfast in Toronto last week.

The NDP’s biggest donors in 2015 were the B.C. Government and Service Employees Union, with more than $92,000 and the United Steelworkers Canada with $62,000.

The biggest donor to the BC Liberals was the Charles F. White Corporation, the company of Keg Restaurants owner David Aisenstat, which gave $112,000 in 2015. Rennie Marketing Systems, whose principal Bob Rennie is the party’s fundraising chair, gave $73,500.

Other large corporate donations included $100,400 from Aquilini Investment Group, $98,000 from Concord Pacific Developments Corp., $92,925 from natural gas producer Encana Corp., $75,430 from miner Pretium Resources Inc., $62,225 from the New Car Dealers Association of B.C., $30,500 from Woodfibre LNG Ltd, $67,397 from Gateway Casinos and Entertainment Ltd., $31,458 from Great Canadian Gaming Corp., $70,500 from West Fraser Mills Ltd. and $29,550 from the Vancouver Taxi Association.

[BC Liberal donor list here. NDP donor list here.]

The BC Liberals took in more than $1 million at a single fundraising dinner in Vancouver June 2, 2015, with tickets selling for $1,000 and $450 and the majority of sales to organizations.

 

Just Posted

FILE – Perry Bellegarde, National Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, takes part in an event on Parliament Hill in Ottawa on Tuesday, July 7, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Indigenous Peoples Day must be a ‘call to action’, says Assembly of First Nations chief

Discovery of children at Kamloops residential school site must lead to change, Perry Bellegarde says

The Binche Fishing Derby at Stuart Lake is fast approaching. (Binche Fishing Derby Facebook photo)
Binche shares excitement for upcoming fishing derby

“It’s more than just fishing,” says Dave Birdi

A person receives a COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward)
Local youth vaccination clinics underway

Pfizer vaccine will be used

Priya Sharma. (Submitted)
Column: Why ultimatums don’t work

By Priya Sharma It is a common misconception that people can choose… Continue reading

The border crossing into the United States is seen during the COVID-19 pandemic in Lacolle, Que. on February 12, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Paul Chiasson
VIDEO: Border quarantine to soon lift for fully vaccinated Canadians

Eligible travellers must still take multiple COVID-19 tests

Chilliwack secondary school’s principal is apologizing after a quote equating graduation with the end of slavery in the U.S. was included in the 2020-2021 yearbook. (Screenshot from submitted SnapChat)
B.C. student’s yearbook quote equates grad to end of slavery; principal cites editing error

Black former student ‘disgusted’ as CSS principal apologizes for what is called an editing error

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross. (Photo by Peter Versteege)
BC Liberal leadership candidate condemns ‘senseless violence’ of Okanagan church fires

Skeena MLA Ellis Ross says reconciliation isn’t about revenge for past tragedies

A coroner’s inquest will be taking place at the Capitol Theatre in Port Alberni for the next week. (ELENA RARDON / ALBERNI VALLEY NEWS)
Teen B.C. mom who died following police custody recalled as ‘friend to many’

Police sent Jocelyn George to hospital after intoxication had gone ‘beyond the realm’ of normal detox

FILE - In this Nov. 29, 2020, file photo, Las Vegas Raiders defensive end Carl Nassib leaves the field after an NFL football game against the Atlanta Falcons in Atlanta. Nassib on Monday, June 21, 2021, became the first active NFL player to come out as gay. Nassib announced the news on Instagram, saying he was not doing it for the attention but because “I just think that representation and visibility are so important.” (AP Photo/John Bazemore, File)
Nassib becomes first active NFL player to come out as gay

More than a dozen NFL players have come out as gay after their careers were over

Penticton Indian Band Chief Greg Gabriel speaks to the Sacred Hearts Catholic Church burning down early Monday morning, June 21, 2021. (Monique Tamminga Western News)
Penticton band chief condemns suspicious burning of 2 Catholic churches

Both Catholic church fires are deemed suspicious, says RCMP

COVID-19 daily cases reported to B.C. public health, seven-day moving average to June 17, 2021. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C.’s COVID-19 infections drop to 90 on Sunday, 45 Monday

Pandemic spread dwindles as 77% of adults receive vaccine

By protesting uninvited in First Nations’ territories, conservationists are acting in a neocolonial or paternalistic manner, says Huu-ay-aht Chief Robert Dennis. Photo by Heather Thomson
A closer look: do Vancouver Island First Nations support the war in the woods?

First Nations/environmentalist old growth alliance uneasy, if it exists at all

A blood drive in support of 1-year-old Rielynn Gormley of Agassiz is scheduled for Monday, June 28 at Tzeachten First Nation Community Hall in Chilliwack. Rielynn lives with type 3 von Willebrand disease, which makes it difficult for her to stop bleeding. (Screenshot/Canadian Blood Services)
Upcoming blood drive in honour of Fraser Valley toddler with rare blood condition

The Gormley family has organized a blood drive in Chilliwack on June 28

Most Read