Skeena election candidates Nathan Cullen

Skeena candidates reveal federal election expenses

The amount of money Skeena-Bulkley Valley riding candidates spent in last fall's federal election is out

The amount of money Skeena-Bulkley Valley riding candidates received from donors and spent on their campaigns over the course of the 42nd federal election has been revealed.

Candidates across the country are given four months after a federal election, which most recently was Oct. 19, 2015, in order to file their electoral campaign returns. The results are then made public through Elections Canada.

On an electoral campaign return, candidates must report all the incoming and outgoing cash, property and services they used during an election.

This includes the total amount of money contributed to a candidate by individuals and associations, as well as the total amount a candidate spent on their campaign.

NDP MP Nathan Cullen who was re-elected in the Skeena-Bulkley Valley riding by capturing almost 52 per cent of the vote received a total of $31,907.99 in contributions from 190 contributors and received another $70,000 from registered associations.

Cullen’s grand total of contributions, loans, transfers and other cash inflows was $108,498.54. His total election expenses were $64,374.30.

Conservative candidate Tyler Nesbitt received $105,531 and spent $62,161.25 during the election; Christian Heritage candidate Don Spratt received $27,317.61 and spent $20,710.97; Green Party candidate Jeannie Parnell received $669.92 and did not file any expenses.

However, of the 1,800 candidates who fought to capture a seat in one of Canada’s 338 ridings last election, not all have had their returns filed yet.

Brad Layton, who represented the Liberal Party in the Skeena-Bulkley Valley riding last election, was late submitting his electoral campaign return.

However, his official agent, Michael Mehr, said in an email that an extension was requested and granted to the campaign by Elections Canada which is not uncommon.

Mehr said the return has now been submitted but still needs to be processed by the auditor.

“Although we are now beyond the extension period, the return has been completed and we are waiting on the completion of the audit to submit the return,” Mehr said.

He added: “Reasons for the extension are all on me. Brad has been extremely cooperative and provided all necessary information on a very timely basis. This is my first time fulfilling the official agent role (or any role in the election process for that matter) and, although the transactions are very straightforward to account for, the reporting process is not.”

Although Layton’s campaign return isn’t currently available on the Elections Canada website, Mehr was able to recite the numbers that will appear when it is made available.

Mehr said the Layton campaign received $11,151 from 18 contributors and the federal Liberal Party contributed another $19,717.27.

The grand total of contributions, loans, transfers and other cash inflows the campaign received totalled $30,868.27.

Layton’s election expenses over the course of the campaign were $15,325.55.