Has Catherine McKenney accepted any contributions from third party advertisers?

Catherine McKenney received an endorsement from Horizon Ottawa, an organization that trains and provides resources to preferred candidates

Ottawa, Ontario Catherine McKenney must come clean and clarify whether the McKenney Campaign has accepted any contributions from third party advertiser, Horizon Ottawa.

Horizon Ottawa has endorsed Catherine McKenney, and the organization says on its website, “The 2022 Municipal Election is set to be a change election, with progressives running in wards across the city for council seats, and with at least one progressive vying for the Mayoral seat. We need to start planning now. That means identifying those progressives as well as the teams that will lead them to victory. It also means ensuring that both candidates and teams have the training and resources needed to pull it off.”

The Municipal Elections Act specifically states that only residents can donate to municipal campaigns. As one expert said, “We've seen Horizon Ottawa has been offering to train volunteers or to train staff. if I were a candidate, I would be concerned that that could be a contribution — and third-party advertisers are not allowed to contribute to a campaign.”

The expert went on to say in a separate interview that this practice of training volunteers or providing staff to a campaign was “pushing the limit, and [they’re] not sure this is legal”, noting that this is a “slippery slope” and “dodgy, legally”. “From the candidate’s end, who may be receiving that help, that potentially is a contribution to their campaign. It’s very clear: a third party cannot contribute to a campaign. They’re supposed to be completely separate entities.”

Horizon Ottawa says that it has 700 members. In fact, Horizon Ottawa’s spokesperson and Director worked for Catherine McKenney in 2020. Are Ottawa residents to believe that not one of these trained individuals have worked, or are currently working for the Catherine McKenney Campaign? Did Catherine McKenney know that Horizon Ottawa was training volunteers to support their campaign? Have they had recent contact with Horizon Ottawa, of any kind?

Catherine McKenney must come clean and clarify whether any of these 700 trained volunteers or staff have, or currently work on the McKenney campaign.

As Mayor, Mark Sutcliffe would propose a number of measures that ensure complaints about misconduct during municipal elections are dealt with in a timely manner, and vow to reject support from third parties who are trying to bring partisan politics to City Hall.

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