Premier Christy Clark speaks to BC Liberal convention in Vancouver, November 2016. BLACK PRESS

BC Liberal donations top $13 million in 2016

Elections BC reports totals as investigation of party donations continues

The BC Liberal Party collected $13,129,390 in donations in 2016, more than twice the total for the BC NDP, according to financial statements released Wednesday by Elections BC.

The NDP collected $6,212,605, while the BC Green Party reported $757,269 for 2016.

The Greens stopped accepting corporate and union donations last year, and their final total for the year was less than $5,000 in corporate donations and $200 from a union.

The BC Liberals reported several six-figure donations, including $200,000 contributions from 2300 Kingsway Residences and John Redekop Construction. The biggest donation for the BC NDP was $250,000 from the United Steelworkers.

Donations are a hot issue going into the campaign for the May 9 provincial election. The BC Liberals started reporting their donations regularly in January, rather than wait for Elections BC to file reports after the election. The NDP didn’t follow suit, and has vowed to put an end to corporate and union donations if it forms a government, allowing only limited donations from individuals and considering public subsidy for political parties.

The RCMP are reviewing B.C. political donations to all parties after reports of lobbyists paying for tickets to fundraising events and then being reimbursed by clients, a potential violation of the Election Act.

The BC Liberal Party announced in March it was returning nearly $93,000 in donations that were made by 43 individuals, and the BC NDP has also returned two donations from 2015 worth about $10,000.

Elections BC has posted a searchable database of its reported donations on its website, electionsbc.gov.bc.ca.

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