Regional Councillor, John Taylor, says he will not accept campaign contributions from developers and hopes all candidates running for election in Newmarket will do the same.
Taylor tells me: “I’ve never taken developer donations. I don’t do it.”
He also stresses that when he accepted a $750 campaign donation from Dwight Slessor Holdings Ltd that was before the Slessors put in their planning application to develop Slessor Square (see blog Developers, Money and Politicians 25 January 2014).
He tells me he had no way of knowing at that stage that the Slessors were planning a huge development on their car lot in Yonge Street, directly opposite Upper Canada Mall.
Fair enough. That is why politicians should hand back campaign contributions from friends, colleagues and supporters who subsequently morph into developers, explaining publicly why the cash is being returned.
Now that John Taylor has made his position crystal clear, I hope that Darryl Wolk, who is challenging Taylor this year, will follow suit. I have written to him and will post his reply here.
There is also a role for the Era Banner.
An editorial calling on candidates of every stripe to reject developers’ money could make the difference.
Bottom Line: Developers should stay out of elections.