Media releases | October 15, 2021

EDIT (October 18, 2021) - An additional number of candidates have signed on to the agreement. The total is now 206, including submissions from Craig Curtis (Red Deer Council Candidate), Trisha Estabrooks (Edmonton School Board Trustee Candidate), and Grace Yan (Calgary Mayoral Candidate). 


EDMONTON - Public Interest Alberta, a non-partisan and progressive advocacy organization, has released a list of 202 municipal campaigns across the province who have agreed to release their donors publicly in advance of the election. The candidates have also agreed that, if elected, they will use their platform to advocate for changes to election financing laws to require this disclosure prior the election day in future municipal campaigns. Public Interest Alberta sent the pledge invitation to all candidates in Edmonton, Calgary, Red Deer, Medicine Hat, Lethbridge and Wood Buffalo Municipality last week. 

“We know that a candidates’ donor list can say as much about their values as their platform,” said Bradley Lafortune, Executive Director of Public Interest Alberta, “And we know that in elections, money talks. While some laws banning corporate and union donations have been enacted to level the playing field – a welcomed change – the legislation has opened the door for the return of dark money via PACs and spending by wealthy and entrenched interests. Within this current context, it’s especially important to know whose interest a candidate is working in before our ballots are cast.” 

Parkland Institute Executive Director Bill Kilgannon echoed Lafortune’s call for transparency, and added “Our research into the candidate disclosures from the last municipal elections shows that wealthy individuals and corporations provided the majority of campaign funds for successful city councillors. Parkland Institute’s study Big Money Big Influence also reveals how even though there are serious indications some candidates broke the law, there seems to be no accountability from the cities or the provincial government. Clearly, something needs to change in order to curb this massive influence and ensure fair, transparent elections.”

Parkland and PIA teamed up to present a webinar on the impacts of dark money on Alberta politics, as well as the unfair deal the province is giving to Alberta’s municipalities. 

“Alberta voters have a real chance to put the public interest on the ballot this election,” said Lafortune. “Knowing where the money is coming from is a vital step to making choices that will create a better and more equitable future for all.” 

Campaign Disclosures by the Numbers & Full Lists: