CAQ Election Fund Mayors have donated almost 100000 since

CAQ Election Fund | Mayors have donated almost $100,000 since 2021 –

(Quebec) Quebec mayors donated nearly $100,000 to the Coalition Avenir Québec (CAQ) electoral fund between 2021 and 2023.

Published at 10:35 am.


Patrice Bergeron The Canadian Press

This comes as the CAQ is mired in controversy over its funding methods, according to a compilation obtained by The Canadian Press from a reliable source.

In total, since the last municipal elections in 2021, almost half of Quebec's mayors and prefects, or 503 out of 1,138, have contributed to funding the CAQ.

They contributed $20,535 into the CAQ cat in 2021, $40,155 in 2022 and $38,190 in 2023, for a total of $98,880. Donations from thousands of local councilors are not included in the compilation.

By comparison, the CAQ raised nearly $779,000 in individual donations in 2021 and $1.35 million in 2022, an election year in which citizens are eligible to donate another 100 on top of the maximum allowable donation of $100 per year Contribute US dollars.

The most common donation from mayors is $100, the maximum approved amount per year.

The Canadian Press validated data collected through donor research on the Élections Québec website through random sampling.

Last week, François Legault assured that his party is not particularly targeting local elected officials in its financing strategies.

However, the Canadian Press revealed last Tuesday that CAQ MP Louis-Charles Thouin had invited about ten mayors from his Rousseau constituency for a cocktail to replenish the electoral fund with $100, in return for the elected officials being able to meet the Minister of Transport, Geneviève Guilbault, February 8th in Saint-Jacques.

Mr Legault suggested his party would revise its messaging but reiterated that mayors would not have to pay CAQ to meet with a minister.

“The file is closed,” he said in a press conference following a two-day meeting of his group in Sherbrooke last Thursday.

Québec Solidaire MP Vincent Marissal called on the ethics commissioner to investigate Mr Thouin, citing a CAQ “financing scheme” that could allow an interview with a minister in exchange for a $100 donation. According to the QS deputy, this violates several articles of the Code of Ethics. The request is being processed.

In a report broadcast by Radio-Canada in December, Abitibi mayors expressed their discomfort and said they felt compelled to contribute to the CAQ to meet a minister to advance their concerns.

The electoral law stipulates that the donor to a political party must certify that “his contribution is made voluntarily, without compensation or consideration, from his own assets and that it has not been and will not be the subject of any reimbursement.”

The Canadian Press asked Élections Québec to clarify the issue of the contribution, which must be paid without compensation.

“The spirit of the Electoral Code in relation to the fact that the contribution must be made “without compensation or consideration” is to prevent a party or candidate from finding themselves in a situation where they are opposed to that of a donor “We feel obliged to ensure that every donor acts voluntarily to pay their contribution on their own initiative and from their own resources, without being pressured or promised by a third person,” said a spokesman. Word from Élections Québec in an email.

In his challenge message, the CAQ MP justified his actions by saying: “Every MP has to raise funds for the next elections every year, but this year I have decided to propose a new formula.”

He said he wanted to “combine business with pleasure” by inviting elected officials to a “private cocktail” priced at $100 on a 5-for-7 basis in Ms. Guilbault's presence.

“Geneviève and I would be pleased to welcome you and discuss with you various issues that concern you, including road and public transport issues,” he wrote.

Remember that the Ministry of Transport and its Minister are in constant contact with municipalities on issues of financing road infrastructure, public transport, road maintenance, new sections, safety, etc.

A meeting with the minister may thus enable a local elected official to advance a dossier, but an elected official who requests a meeting with a minister should not have to pay to hold the meeting.

Two weeks ago, Radio-Canada revealed another CAQ funding controversy involving Chauveau member Sylvain Lévesque.

A citizen who wanted her representative to advance her file was offered to meet with Finance Minister Eric Girard in exchange for a $100 contribution to the party's fund.

The National Assembly's ethics commissioner announced last week that she was opening an investigation into Mr. Lévesque's case.