Campaign Life Coalition President worried they will face big fines in Ontario
Now that is news - CLC President Gunnarson fears he may be breaking the Elections Act.
Opinion October 19, 2018
The CLC got some bad news the start of this week and are now in full crisis mode.
In an emergency email sent to members the CLC seems to think it is violating the new Municipal Elections Act third party advertising rules by endorsing candidates like Quinn, Karabela and Skoko on its website. It needed to go to over 400 municipalities in person by today to register as a Third Party Advertiser. My guess is someone forgot to read the rules and they failed to register as required by law. Ignorance of the law is not an excuse. The law was changed in 2017 so it shouldn't be a surprise if your job is political lobbying like the CLC. It is indeed Ironic that CLC member Anthony Quinn has been yelling that the unions may be violating the Elections Act and showing everyone a form letter of "notice" on his Twitter feed. .Well here is breaking news Anthony - they haven't spent any money on anyone's campaign, all communications were internal as required by law and all city clerks have heard from legal council and no longer have any concerns the unions are Third Party Advertisers.
Here is the internal CLC email to supporters - abbreviated:
We urgently need the help of local supporters to help register our organization in as many municipalities as possible by the deadline of 4:30 pm Friday Oct. 19th. This deadline is imposed by Ontario's Ministry of Municipal Affairs.
As you know, CLC has been active in rating municipal candidates and publishing voter guides for school trustee, city council and mayor positions.
We have done this for many years. Decades even.
However the previous Liberal government imposed drastic new rules for organizations like CLC's that have taken effect for the first time in this 2018 municipal election. The stiff new rules, to be honest, have taken us by surprise.
The law now requires the CLC to register in person in each municipality in Ontario where the CLC has endorsed or rated a candidate on our website.
Electronic and email registration is not permitted. Simply put, this is an impossible task for CLC staff. Our employees cannot simply get into a car and drive to the hundreds of municipalities that exist including the far east and far north of our vast province. Especially not by end of day Friday! If CLC fails to comply, it could result in serious penalties being imposed against us by the Ministry.
However, a local volunteer that lives in the municipality can be authorized by the CLC to register on our behalf.
Therefore, we are asking for one supporter in every municipality in Ontario to step forward as a volunteer for CLC, to go down to their municipal office, and register us as a Third Party Advertiser in person with the Municipal Clerk. (the rest of the email gives instructions on how to register as their representative)
The chance that the CLC registered as a Third Party Advertiser in over 400 municipalities by today is ZERO - exactly the same chance their hand picked candidates in Halton have of winning on Monday.
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