Calgary Reforms

A Calgary Herald editorial discusses proposed reforms in Canada.

We need six changes, and we need them now:

1. Limits on contributions. The amount is up for debate, but $1,000 or $1,500 per donor is a good start.

2. Limits on spending. Fifty cents per resident is fair and reasonable. It allows for an effective campaign to be run, without getting into a money war.

3. Campaign surpluses given to the city, or donated to charity. Yes, if they are donated, the candidate will get a major tax receipt, but it’s better than allowing them to simply keep the money.

4. Immediate disclosure of donations — within five business days of the donation, they should be posted on the candidate’s website.

5. Donations only in election years. Otherwise, incumbents can have three unfettered years of fundraising, leading to the question of whether donors are supporting a future election or rewarding current performance.

6. There should be a real estate registry highlighting all of a candidate’s holdings.

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