B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson and MLAs at the B.C. legislature. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)

B.C. Liberal leader Andrew Wilkinson and MLAs at the B.C. legislature. (Tom Fletcher/Black Press)

B.C. Liberal party fined for accepting donation from corporate company

The party was fined $200 for a disallowed donation from contractor in Prince Rupert

The B.C. Liberal Party was fined $200 for accepting a disallowed corporate donation from a Prince Rupert contractor.

Elections B.C. issued a letter to David Goldsmith, the B.C. Liberal Party financial agent, in June stating the Liberals accepted a prohibited $500 contribution from Sullivan Mechanical Ltd. in March 2018.

In 2017, the province passed legislation banning political donations from corporations and unions.

According to the B.C. Elections Act “a financial agent or an individual authorized under subsection (1) must not accept a political contribution from a person other than an eligible individual.”

READ MORE: Embattled MLA says BC Liberal accusations are just ‘gotcha politics’

The contribution was made through the party’s website under Sullivan Mechanical’s corporate credit card. The letter also states that the billing address for the contribution a “provided a Prince Rupert post office box rather than a street address.”

The minimum fine for accepting an ineligible political donation is $250 for the first offence. An additional $100 was added to the fine because Elections B.C. found the Liberal party did not have “adequate safeguards in place” to prevent the donation.

Elections B.C. then reduced the fine by $150 after weighing in other factors , noting this was the party’s first offence, cooperating with the investigation, and taking measures to prevent this from happening in the future, totaling the fine to $200.

The party has 30 days to pay the fine.

Last week, Kelowna West MLA Ben Stewart voluntarily excluded himself from the B.C. Liberal caucus after an undisclosed issue with a political donation was brought to the attention of Elections B.C. The two incidents are not related.

READ MORE: B.C. Liberal MLA leaves caucus as donation examined

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Jenna Cocullo | Journalist
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