PORT MOODY — It turns out rookie Port Moody-Coquitlam MLA Joe Trasolini was not only a big spender during his successful election campaign, but he was also dropping some serious Borden’s prior to the byelection.
According to financial reports released by Elections BC, the former mayor turned MLA spent $60,730 during his campaign in April, and another $51,434 in expenses outside the 60-day pre-campaign period.
Add another $20,190 for expenses not subject to limits, and Trasolini spent $132,356 — outspending his rivals from the Liberal and BC Conservative parties.
The limit for expenses during the campaign period is $72,970 for candidates.
Trasolini received $133,421 in contributions, including $98,037 from the NDP in transfers, and another $35,384 from trade unions, more specifically COPE 378, or the Canadian Office and Profession Employees union.
Some of his campaign expenses include $10,234 on promotional material, $29,983 on salaries and benefits and $1,905 for social functions and thank-you parties.
Trasolini easily made the transition from mayor to MLA, winning the byelection with 6,247 votes, or 54 per cent of the vote.
In contrast, second-place finisher Dennis Marsden spent $56,372 during the campaign period and another $33,736 in the run up to the election, for a total of $95,639.
He finished second place in the byelection, collecting 3,484 votes, or 30.3 per cent of the overall vote.
Third-place finisher Christine Clarke spent the least, totaling just $21,847.
She finished a distant third in the race, collecting 1,766 votes, or 15.3 per cent of the vote.
But Clarke managed to get more bang for her buck between all the candidates.
It turned out Trasolini spent $21 per vote; Marsden spent $27 per vote, while Clarke spent just $12 per vote.
Financial reports were supposed to be filed by July 18, three months after the byelection, but Trasolini was given an extension until Aug. 3 due to “extenuating” circumstances.
According to election results, just 32 per cent of eligible voters turned out to the polls to cast a ballot in the byelection. The byelection for Port Moody-Coquitlam was called after Iain Black resigned in October to take a job with the Vancouver Board of Trade.