Rules for Calgary councillors' charity work drafted
Rules would apply outside political campaigning
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Calgary City Council is looking at bringing in regulations for councillors who want to fundraise for events or groups outside of political campaigns.
Ward 14 Councillor Peter Demong said he’s been pushing for such regulations for a while because he knows some councillors want to do work for charities.
Every year he holds an event that has local businesses sponsoring citizens’ community association enrolment costs.
Demong said local businesses provide cash donations for the event. A barbecue is held, and citizens from his ward come out to have fun and hopefully sign up for their community association membership without having to pay the fees – usually about $20.
“It raises awareness of what the community associations do for you,” said Demong.
He said his office handles the money, but does so in a transparent way.
“I’ve been posting it online,” he said. “Everything is accounted for. I do have a separate bank account. From what I can tell, I am doing everything by the book.”
Demong said the rules being proposed in Calgary come from policies in Ottawa and Toronto. He says having them down on paper will remove any doubt.
The only thing he hasn’t been doing which the new rules would now require is filing an annual fundraising activity statement.
Councillor Shane Keating sits with Demong on the legislative governance task force, which will review the proposed rules on Tuesday.
He said personally, he stays away from handling money outside of campaigning.
“I don’t mind promoting it if it’s a great thing to promote – like Movember – but I would never collect any funds. I would automatically say, if I was growing a moustache for Movember, please donate on my behalf at this link.”