Surrey mayor under fire for golf tournament fundraiser, despite it being within the rules

An invite-only golf tournament soliciting corporate donations for the mayor of Surrey’s party is on-side with the letter of the law, but at least one critic calls it “out of bounds” with the spirit of B.C.’s new campaign finance rules.

The “Mayor Linda Hepner’s Annual Mayor’s Invitational” event is set for Thursday at Hazelmere Golf and Country Club in White Rock. For the tournament, Hepner’s Surrey First party has been soliciting corporate donations including $25,000 “gold sponsors” which comes with “dinner seating at the Mayor’s table for your foursome,” according to the event’s sponsorship material, which was obtained by Postmedia.

But despite new campaign finance legislation brought in last year by the B.C. NDP intended to “keep big money out of politics,” the Surrey First fundraiser can still accept unlimited corporate donations less than four months before the October municipal election, Elections B.C. confirmed Wednesday.

Thursday’s golf tournament was described by Hepner in the sponsorship package’s signed letter of invitation, as “a fantastic opportunity to network with businesses and community leaders.” The package says 144 “business and community leaders” were invited “to enjoy a personal networking afternoon” with the mayor.

Surrey First officials including Coun. Tom Gill, the party’s 2018 mayoral candidate, emphasized the party was playing within election finance rules on Thursday’s tournament.

SURREY, BC, Surrey Councillor Tom Gill and Surrey mayor Linda Hepner .Mayor’s Task Force on Gang Violence Prevention findings and recommended action steps. The Task Force was formed in October 2017 to review programs that tackle gang related violence and formulate new recommendations for enhancing or expanding existing programs and implementing new initiatives. In attendance Surrey mayor Linda Hepner, Gordon Hogg, MLA Michael Farnworth, Assistant Commissioner Dwayne McDonald and Surrey Councillor, Tom Gill… (Francis Georgian / PNG). July 03 2018. , Surrey, July 03 2018. Reporter: , ( Francis Georgian …read more

Source:: Vancouver Sun

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