EDMONTON - Public Interest Alberta has called on all municipal candidates in Alberta to release their donors prior to election day on October 18th. Public Interest Alberta sent an individual pledge to all candidates in Edmonton, Calgary, Red Deer, Medicine Hat, Lethbridge and Wood Buffalo Municipality asking two questions: "will you release your personal donors list before the election?" And, "If elected, will you work with your colleagues to change campaign financing laws to be more transparent by requiring the release of donations prior to the election?"
“In elections, your donors say as much about your values as your platform,” said Bradley Lafortune, Executive Director of Public Interest Alberta. “That’s why yesterday, on the first day of advance voting, we contacted all candidates in several major cities, and asked them to release their donors before October 18th and pledge to work with their colleagues to advocate for a simple change to legislation, which would require candidates to do that in the future.”
PIA circulated a direct two question survey to candidates and PIA will share the results with supporters and the public in the coming days before election day on October 18th. Once the election is over, PIA will continue to advocate for changes to the Local Authorities Election Act that would require proactive disclosure prior to election day, so that voters can make more informed decisions about who is backing candidates.
“In Alberta, we have an opportunity to shine a light on the money in our elections,” said Michael Phair, former City Councillor and member of the PIA Democracy Task Force. “It’s never been easier to communicate who is funding a campaign. If candidates aren’t willing to say today who is funding them, then we can’t fully trust them to be transparent after the election. We’re hopeful a majority of the hopefuls in this race will demonstrate leadership and transparency by pledging to release their donors and work to enhance transparency through legislation.”