B.C. political parties see drop in donations after new campaign finance rules

VANCOUVER - Donations to political parties in British Columbia dropped significantly last year after new rules banning union and corporate contributions came into effect.

Interim financial reports released by Elections BC on Monday show the New Democrats took in $3.3 million in 2018, compared with $15.3 million in 2017.

The Opposition Liberals raised $2.4 million last year, compared with $12.7 million the previous year.

The Greens received only $709,808 in 2018, compared with $1.4 million in 2017, though the party has refused to take money from unions or corporations since fall 2016.

The NDP government brought in the new rules, which also capped donations by individuals at $1,200 annually, and they took force on Nov. 30, 2017.

The changes to the Election Act included a taxpayer-funded, five-year allowance to wean the parties off big-ticket donations.

Starting last year, political parties have received $2.50 for every vote they got in the last election, with the funding dropping by 25 cents each year until 2021.

That means both the Liberals and New Democrats will receive just over $8.1 million over five years, while the Green party will get $3.4 million.


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