VANCOUVER — Fresh from its first municipal election campaign, the OneCity team today continued its call for campaign finance reform in a written submission to British Columbia’s Special Committee on Local Elections Expense Limits. OneCity is putting forward a series of specific recommendations to overhaul what is clearly a broken system, beginning with strict limits on donations and spending for municipal political parties and candidates.
The ability to raise funds through donations and for parties and third-party groups to spend money on advertising should not be determining factors in any election. That is why OneCity is calling for individual donations during the civic election period to be limited to $250, and for strict spending limits for parties, candidates and third-party organizations. If and only if those limits are enforced for donations and spending, OneCity supports the complete removal of corporate and union donations.
OneCity is also calling for political parties to disclose all non-campaign period donations and to do so annually. Municipal political parties are currently only required to publicly report campaign-period donations, leaving three-plus years to stockpile unreported “dark money” and contributing to a lack of transparency and growing cynicism among residents.
OneCity’s first candidate for City Council, RJ Aquino, received 30,050 votes in the Nov. 15 election. The party’s full submission to the Special Committee is available here: http://www.onecityvancouver.ca/campaign_finance