NPA's promise of transparency and accountability doesn't extend to releasing first names of all donors

    1 of 1 2 of 1

      NPA mayoral candidate Ken Sim likes to portray himself as an open book to voters.

      He talks a lot about transparency and accountability, even issuing a five-point plan that he says "respects taxpayers".

      Among his proposals is a "full and independent review" of city finances.

      "Finally, the plan addresses the issue that has been most pressing so far in this election—the influence of anonymous advertising and secretive funds on our political process," the party stated in a news release earlier in the campaign.

      However, there's not quite as much sunshine on the party's fundraising efforts.

      As the Breaker's Bob Mackin has tweeted, the NPA has not revealed the first names of its donors in a list released this morning.

      You can view the list here.

      Under municipal-election-financing rules, the maximum donation is $1,200.

      We can only guess that the $1,200 from "P Brown" came from Fraser Institute chair and long-time NPA donor Peter Brown.

      It's likely that $1,200 from "E Chutter" refers to former NPA director and honorary Russian consul in Vancouver Erin Chutter.

      There are seven donors from people with the surname "Armstrong". They include a $1,200 contribution from a "P Armstrong".

      We're assuming that's railway-company owner Peter Armstrong, who encouraged Sim to enter the NPA mayoral-nomination race.

      Sim also has the support of billionaire lululemon founder Chip Wilson, but it's impossible to prove if he's thrown any money into the NPA pot.

      That's because "Wilson" is a very common name in Vancouver.

      There's $1,200 from "C Wilson". Another $1,200 contribution came from "S Wilson", and Chip's wife is named Shannon.

      Then there's a $1,200 contribution from "J Wilson", and Chip's son is named J.J.

      Another "J Wilson" contributed $200 and then there's $110 from "D Wilson".

      It's impossible to say if the final "Wilson" donation is from former NPA park commissioner Duncan Wilson or another one of Chip's sons, Duke Wilson.

      Perhaps more revealing is the lack of any donations from anyone named "Stowe".

      This means that long-time NPA supporter Norman Stowe has not yet opened up his wallet for the cause.

      Stowe heads the Pace Group, which employed former NPA councillor Hector Bremner before he left the NPA to run for mayor with Yes Vancouver.

      Bremner's work with the Pace Group was the subject of a complaint to the NPA board, which subsequently vetoed his application to seek the party's mayoral nod.

      There is a $1,200 contribution, however, from "R Macdonald". Could that be the same "R Macdonald"—developer Rob Macdonald—who gave $960,000 to the NPA campaign in 2011?

      At this point in the campaign, it's impossible to tell.

      Comments