Candidates for the municipal election on Oct. 20 won't have fiscal freedom when it comes to campaign finance expenses.
During the campaign period for the 2014 municipal elections, there were no expense limitations, source restrictions or limits on campaign contributions. However, this year, there are a few changes to the Elections BC campaign finance laws.
The expense limits for this election vary for each jurisdiction and position in office sought.
In Prince George, a candidate running for mayor has an expense limit of $35,423.80. Conversely, for a councillor, the limit is $22,988.48.
For School District 57 candidates, each Trustee Election Area has a different limit. Trustee Election Area 1 Board of Education Trustee candidates can spend a total of $26,810.48. Trustee Election Area 2 and 3 Board of Education Trustee candidates can spend a total of $5,000.
Other guidelines to make note of include:
- Campaign contributions from organizations, corporations and unions are prohibited
- Only eligible individuals can make a campaign contribution. Residents of British Columbia who are also a Canadian citizen or permanent resident are eligible under this rule
- An eligible individual can give up to $1,200 per year, per campaign to an independent candidate or $1,200 in total to an elector organization (civic political party) and its endorsed candidates
- Expense limits are from Sept. 22 to Oct. 20
- Candidates must file a financial disclosure statement with Elections BC by Jan. 18, 2019