Time for B.C. Liberals to end corporate sponsorships of fundraisers

(Victoria, 8 June 2014) – An estimated 200 B.C. Liberal supporters in Chilliwack chowed down for free last June after Capital Power and Belkorp Environmental Services each made $4,000 donations to the B.C. Liberal party to sponsor the John Les Appreciation Dinner.

According to the “VIP invitation” obtained by IntegrityBC, the invitee and their spouse (or guest) were able to attend at no cost: “Thanks to the generous donation by our event sponsors.”

Since 2005, Belkorp and its associated companies have donated $194,500 to the B.C. Liberal party and Capital Power has donated $53,165.

“Athletes are sponsored. Cultural groups are sponsored. Political parties should not be sponsored, whether it’s by a corporation or a union,” said IntegrityBC executive director Dermod Travis.

In January, Belkorp Environmental Services also sponsored a B.C. Liberal fundraising dinner for West Vancouver – Sea to Sky MLA Jordan Sturdy where Transportation minister Todd Stone was the featured speaker. According to an invitation obtained by IntegrityBC, the event was “generously sponsored in part by Belkorp Environmental Services Inc.”

Les was hired by Belkorp last August as a government lobbyist, following his retirement before the last election. In October, he was appointed by the government to the Farm Industry Review Board. As chair of the review board, he’s eligible to bill the government up to $60,000 annually at a rate of $625 per day.

IntegrityBC is calling on all B.C. political parties to end the practice of allowing corporations or unions to sponsor their fundraisers and to proactively disclose the names of all those who attend their events.

 

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For more information:

Dermod Travis, Executive Director

IntegrityBC

250-590-5126

info@integritybc.ca