Of the dozen Members of Parliament south of the Fraser and in the Fraser Valley from Delta to Hope, Abbotsford’s Ed Fast was the thriftiest in the last fiscal year.
His expenses totaled $420,684.
The second lowest spender in the region was Liberal Dan Ruimy in Pitt Meadows–Maple Ridge, who spent roughly $10,000 more than Fast.
The top spender in the region was Liberal John Aldag in Cloverdale–Langley City. He tallied $495,833 in expenses.
The second highest spender, was Conservative Chilliwack–Hope MP Mark Strahl ($488,219.)
Jati Sidhu, the Liberal MP for Mission-Matsqui-Fraser Canyon, registered $485,683 in expenses.
Sidhu told Black Press his expenses were $68,524 higher than the national average due, in part, to his large riding. Mission-Matsqui-Fraser Canyon stretches from northern Abbotsford through Mission, north past Carpenter Lake and including Agassiz, Ashcroft, Cache Creek and other small communities along Highway 1.
Indeed, members with larger ridings do tend to spend more.
Federal politicians spent more than $141 million in the last fiscal year and the detailed numbers for each Member of Parliament (MP) break down in very different ways, according to the Members’ Expenditures Report recently posted on the House of Commons website.
The average of all 338 MPs was $417,160. The average Tory spent $435,229 with the average Liberal across Canada — bucking the B.C. trend — spending just $405,152.
The top spending MP in Ottawa was Alberta Conservative MP David Yurdiga ($567,464) followed by Manitoba NDP MP Niki Ashton ($551,275), and third was Labrador Liberal MP Yvonne Jones ($549,984).
Employee salaries were the costliest line item for all 11 valley MPs. Fast’s employees were paid $231,934 last fiscal year.
Fast spent $21,368 on his secondary residence last year and $54,335 on travel. Advertising cost him $14,937 in addition to $10,308 to print and distribute householders. Rent, insurance and utilities for his constituency office cost $36,072.
– with files from Paul Henderson and Tyler Olsen