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January 22, 2019

Did Premier Notley Break Election Donation Laws?

Today, Fort McMurray-Conklin MLA Laila Goodridge issued the following statement:

“It is well-known that Premier Notley lived in Victoria and worked for the BC NDP in the 1990s. Given the NDP’s newfound interest in election financing laws, the Premier should clarify whether she knowingly illegally donated to the Alberta NDP while a BC resident.

“At the fall Alberta NDP convention, the Premier’s husband, in his introduction for the Premier’s speech, stated that they routinely donated to the Alberta NDP while living in BC.

Now Rachel and I moved to BC for a while, but we never gave up our attachment to Alberta. Much to my annoyance, Rachel insisted that we continue to make generous monthly donations to the Alberta NDP. She knew it was the right thing to do…” (Lou Arab, Alberta NDP Convention, October 28, 2018)

“Non-resident political donations were banned in Alberta as early as 1977. Bill 24, The Election Finances and Contributions Disclosure, Act stated:

“31.(1) No registered party, registered constituency association or registered candidate shall, directly or indirectly, (a) knowingly accept contributions from any person normally resident outside Alberta, from any corporation that does not carry on business in Alberta or from a trade union or employee organization other than a trade union or employee organization as defined in this Act.

“We recognize that this occurred many years ago, and that the now-Premier – then working as a lawyer – may have simply been ignorant of the law. The Premier could easily clarify the matter.

“Alternatively, rather than fixate on a petty issue from the past, the UCP would happily focus on matters that voters are overwhelmingly focused on: jobs, their families’ future prosperity and livelihood, and standing up to the Trudeau Liberals’ attacks on our oil and gas workers.”