CBC: Clark’s exclusive fundraisers not a conflict, commissioner rules

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May 4, 2016 | Canadian Press

Vancouver-Point Grey MLA David Eby also filed a complaint about the high-priced, exclusive fundraisers. He later filed another after it was revealed that Clark receives an annual stipend from the B.C. Liberal Party of up to $50,000 per year for work she does for the party.

Fraser’s report said Eby described the stipend as being donations “laundered” through the Liberal Party.

But the conflict of interest commissioner disagreed.

“After considering all of the materials provided by the parties and their submissions, I am unable to conclude that the donations received by the Liberal Party in the circumstances described amount to a ‘private interest’ for the premier,” Fraser wrote.

Fundraising for the party is a political benefit, not a private financial one, he added.

The money raised at the exclusive events goes to the B.C. Liberal Party and Clark cannot access it for her personal use, Fraser said, citing evidence from the premier’s lawyer and the president of the party.

“It is my opinion that the premier was not in an apparent conflict of interest … by virtue of participating in ‘exclusive fundraising events for the B.C. Liberal Party or by receiving a leader’s allowance from the B.C. Liberal Party,” he wrote.

Eby said the report was a letdown.

“I’m disappointed that the commissioner didn`t find receiving $50,000 in cash wasn`t a conflict of interest,” Eby said.

“I think it is another sign that we have a broken system that is in desperate need of reform.”

Full article here: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/christy-clark-fundraiser-conflict-commissioner-1.3567411