Attorney General David Eby. (Black Press)

B.C. political donation reform coming soon

David Eby says Greens, NDP agree, B.C. Liberals may also

Legislation to ban corporate and union donations to B.C. political parties will be introduced as early as next week, Attorney General David Eby says.

Unregulated “big money” was a major issue in the spring election campaign, as the B.C. Liberals and NDP collected millions, with only spending caps for the formal election period.

Eby said Wednesday the issue is complex, but the B.C. Greens have agreed with his proposal and he hopes the B.C. Liberals will support it as well.

“When you ban union and corporate donations, the concern is that the money is going to show up somewhere else, leadership contests, third parties, conventions, all these different issues,” Eby said. “I think that would be most effective if all parties agree to the bill, because it’s going to have to be enforced, and it relies on parties following the rules.”

With Premier John Horgan and other NDP members still scheduled to appear at fundraisers in the coming weeks, Eby said the coming legislation will address donations since the spring election.

B.C. Liberal MLA Andrew Wilkinson re-introduced his party’s earlier bill Wednesday, which includes a ban on foreign donations, a maximum contribution of $5,000 a year to a candidate and party combined, and a requirement for “real time” disclosure.

B.C. Green leader Andrew Weaver, whose party was the only one to refuse corporate and union money said he is pleased the B.C. Liberals have endorsed the principle of individual-only donations.

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