Today was an historic day for British Columbia’s democracy. The unparalleled influence of corporate and union donations, that has become a defining feature of what is broken in BC politics, is coming to an end with the introduction of Bill 3 – Election Amendment Act, 2017.
The timing of this bill is particularly historic for the BC Greens as this month also marks one year since we banned corporate and union donations to our own party.
This bill is also historic for another reason: it is the first bill to be introduced that is a foundational piece of our historic Confidence and Supply Agreement. It is a product of good faith and no surprises consultations with the government.
The consultations on this bill began months ago, when we were at the negotiating table with the BC NDP following the results of the May 9 election, and have been ongoing since then as we have worked out the details. Its introduction demonstrates the opportunity we have to change the way politics is done in this province – to put partisan politics aside and put the interests of people first as two parties work together to develop groundbreaking legislation.
Our top priorities were to ensure that this bill:
In the days ahead, our caucus will be reviewing the bill in great detail to ensure that it is:
We look forward to engaging with our colleagues on both sides of the house in good faith and no surprises to ensure that this legislation adequately addresses the issues with the current system.
Below is the media release that we issued today.
B.C. Green caucus statement on government’s introduction of campaign finance bill
For immediate release
September 18, 2017
VICTORIA, B.C. – Andrew Weaver, leader of the B.C. Green Party, and Adam Olsen, B.C. Green caucus spokesperson for democratic reform, responded to the introduction of the Elections Amendment Act 2017. An agreement to reform B.C.’s electoral finance laws was a flagship component of the Confidence and Supply Agreement signed between Weaver and Premier Horgan and all members of their caucuses.
“This is a historic day for our province’s democracy,” Weaver said.
“Big money has been the defining feature of what is broken in B.C. politics. Now, one year after B.C. Greens banned corporate and union donations to our own party, we will ban it province-wide once and for all. I am delighted that 2017 will go down in history as the last big money election in B.C.”
“The undue influence of special interests through our province’s lax campaign finance laws has led to cynicism and to people feeling like their voices are not heard,” Olsen continued.
“British Columbians should be able to trust their government to put them – not special interests – first. This legislation is a big step towards restoring that trust.
“In our consultations leading up to the introduction of this legislation, our caucus’ core goals were to ban on corporate and union donations, to ensure B.C. is among the lowest individual contribution limits in the country and that this happened immediately as one of the first bills tabled in the legislature.
“I thank Mr. Eby and his office for their diligent work bringing this bill forward so early in the session. In the days and weeks ahead, we will work with the government to ensure that this legislation is comprehensive and adequately addresses the issues with the current system.”
Jillian Oliver, Press Secretary
+1 778-650-0597 | firstname.lastname@example.org