SURREY â€” With political parties in Vancouver voluntarily releasing campaign financing information before the civic election on Nov. 15, what about those in Surrey?
TeamSurrey was the first slate to release a list of donors. Then, on Friday, Barinder Rasode’s One Surrey team released a list – as well as how much each donor contributed.
â€œWe think that having full transparency and accountability is good for the electorate to see who is funding each of the parties,â€ said TeamSurrey’s Stephen Gammer, who is running for a seat on council alongside teammate Brenda Locke, former Liberal MLA for Surrey-Green Timbers.
â€œI think the people of Surrey want to know who is working behind the scenes with each of the parties. We think that the people of Surrey deserve to know now â€“ not after the election â€“ so they can look at things and see what funding sources are for each party or each candidate. Itâ€™s an important thing,â€ Gammer added.
See TeamSurrey’s donor list here.
Rasode agreed it is important to provide voters with a list of donors before they hit the polls.
â€œWhen I talk to transparency and accountability, absolutely I feel people should know who is funding our campaigns,â€ she said, adding she is not accepting donations from gaming companies.
â€œIâ€™m very proud of the fact that a lot of the donations are coming from businesses and residents in the community,â€ Rasode noted.
See One Surrey’s donor list and figures here.
The Surrey First team said they would put up a donors list prior to the election if all other camps do so.
â€œIf everybody agrees to do it, then weâ€™d be happy to go forward and do so,â€ said campaign staffer George Psefteas.
Meanwhile, Safe Surrey Coalition said the team would not be posting their donors online before voting day.
"No. We will not be able to get that together before the election. Particularly in the last week or two, we’ve been getting donations every day, coming in,â€ said Jonathan Ross, communications director for Safe Surrey. â€œAnd so in terms of timeframe and the fact we’re continuing to get a huge amount of donations in the door we will not be able to publish our donors before Nov. 15. Obviously as per the election rules we’re all governed by we will be providing our donation list following the election.â€