B.C. Premier John Horgan listens as Finance Minister Selina Robinson presents the province’s latest budget, April 20, 2021. The budget projects $19 billion in deficits over three years. (Hansard TV)

B.C. Premier John Horgan listens as Finance Minister Selina Robinson presents the province’s latest budget, April 20, 2021. The budget projects $19 billion in deficits over three years. (Hansard TV)

B.C. political parties to collect $3.25M from taxpayers this year

Public input open to May 28 on whether subsidy goes past 2022

B.C.’s per-vote subsidy for political parties has paid out $14.6 million, with another $4.6 million to go before it needs legislation to continue after 2022.

The subsidy was introduced by Premier John Horgan’s minority government after the 2017 election, at $2.50 per vote for qualifying parties. The B.C. NDP campaigned on its pledge to do away with corporate and union donations, and then reversed position and brought in the taxpayer subsidy with the support of the B.C. Green Party. Horgan denied there was any plan to do so in a 2017 election debate with former premier Christy Clark.

After the election, the defeated B.C. Liberal Party voted against the subsidy, but was the largest beneficiary after it passed, collecting nearly $1 million based on the largest number of votes received in 2017.

The subsidy has declined to $1.75 per vote, with the latest payout in January reflecting the NDP majority government. The NDP received $1.57 million, the B.C. Liberals collected $1.11 million and the B.C. Green Party got $497,570.

The 2020 snap election also saw two smaller parties get enough votes to qualify, gathering at least five per cent of the vote in constituencies where they ran candidates. The B.C. Conservative Party collected $62,828.50 and the Rural B.C. Party got $1,319.

RELATED: B.C. budget calls for $19 billion in deficit financing

RELATED: B.C. Liberal leadership candidates debate subsidy

Chief Electoral Office Anton Boegman reported to an all-party committee in late April that he has requested $3.25 million from the finance ministry for the next two instalments, in July 2021 and January 2022. Unless the subsidy is renewed, the final round of payments totalling $1.62 million goes out in July 2022.

The committee has called for public input on whether the subsidy should continue after 2022, in what amount and for how long. The consultation continues until May 28 with written, audio or video submissions as well as virtual public hearings.

With private donations restricted to individual B.C. residents at no more than $1,200 per year, the NDP continued its dominance of fundraising as well. Elections B.C. reported on the parties’ first-quarter political contributions, up to March 31, with the NDP reporting $662,573.27 in donations over three months. The B.C. Liberals reported $241,628.51, the B.C. Greens $170,286.01, the B.C. Conservatives $11,173 and the Rural B.C. Party $60.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

BC legislatureBC politics

Just Posted

The first Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine dose in Canada is prepared at The Michener Institute in Toronto on Monday, Dec. 14, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
One death, 39 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health

There are 484 active cases of the virus in the region currently

Amy Newman follows the route of the Cariboo Waggon Road — now Highway 97 — through Clinton. (Photo credit: New Pathways to Gold Society)
Grant received for Cariboo Waggon Road restoration project north of Clinton

New Pathways to Gold hopes to start work this summer on restoring sections of historic road

Dan Cumming (l, with Lisa Colwell, LPN) was one of 1,918 people who received their first COVID-19 vaccine at a community clinic in Ashcroft in early May. (Photo credit: Barbara Roden)
Vaccine clinics in Ashcroft, Clinton administered 2,664 first doses

Residents over the age of 18 are still eligible to receive their first COVID-19 vaccine

(from l) Ashcroft councillor Deb Tuohey, mayor Barbara Roden, and councillor Nadine Davenport at the opening of Ashcroft’s new water treatment plant in November 2019. At a recent town hall meeting, council said there are no immediate plans to install water meters in the village. (Photo credit: Christopher Roden)
Ashcroft homeowners face 2.5 per cent property tax bump in 2021

Village is moving ahead with variety of projects, but water metering not on the list of priorities

(from l) Cache Creek councillor Annette Pittman, mayor Santo Talarico, and councillors Wendy Coomber and Sue Peters at a budget meeting, May 7, 2021. (Photo credit: Facebook)
Cache Creek budget bylaws pass with one councillor opposed

Annette Pittman cites several reasons for voting against 30% tax increase and pool closure

B.C. Labour Minister Harry Bains in the B.C. legislature, May 13, 2019. (Hansard TV)
VIDEO: B.C. to provide 3 days of sick pay for COVID-19 absences

Province will support employers on cost, labour minister says

BC Housing minister David Eby. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito)
Eby jabs back against Penticton mayor’s ad urging BC Premier to intervene in shelter dispute

Eby writes that Penticton’s ‘serious’ social issues won’t improve under leadership of the mayor

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, April 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 rate creeps up again, 600 new cases Wednesday

One more death, 423 people in hospital with virus

B.C. Agriculture Minister Lana Popham takes questions in the B.C. legislature in 2017. (Hansard TV)
UPDATE: B.C. will fund another year of fresh fruit, vegetables, milk in schools

John Horgan government working on school meal program

Surrey RCMP is releasing sketches of a suspect in an “indecent act” at the Coyote Creek Elementary playground on April 30, 2021. Police said the suspect was clean-shaven “during some interactions” and on “other occasions had stubble outlining a goatee and mustache.” (Images: Surrey RCMP handout)
Vancouver mayor-elect Kennedy Stewart addresses supporters in Vancouver on Sunday, Oct. 21, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver mayor says there’s no time to redo details of drug decriminalization plan

Kennedy Stewart says a federal election could see the small window of opportunity close on the city’s bid for an exemption from criminal provisions on simple possession of small amounts of drugs

Premier Mike Horgan received his first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. (Facebook/John Horgan)
More than 50% of people eligible in B.C. have received 1st vaccine dose

‘We’ve made extraordinary progress together over the past few weeks,’ says Premier Horgan

Brad MacKenzie, advocacy chair for the ALS Society of B.C., says having research projects in the province allows people here to have access to cutting-edge treatments now being developed. (B.C. government video)
B.C. funds research chair for Lou Gehrig’s disease at UBC

Pandemic has cut off patient access to international projects

Most Read