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Both main BC parties ended 2009 deep in debt

Financial statements released today show both the B.C. Liberal Party and the New Democratic Party spent more money than they received last year, but the Liberals' debt is double the size of the NDP's.

The Liberals ended 2009 with a $4.5 million deficit, according to statements filed with Elections B.C.. During the year, which included the election in May, the party brought in $13.3 million, but spent $17.6 million.

The governing party covered the shortfall with two loans worth a total of $4.9 million and paid $150,000 in interest last year.

The NDP ended the year with a $1.37 million accumulated deficit. During the year the opposition party brought in $7.1 million while spending $9.5 million.

The NDP outspent the Liberals on research and polling as well as on advertising. At $324,000 the NDP's research and polling budget was $44,000 higher than the Liberals, while the party spent $2 million on media advertising, compared with a Liberal spend of $490,000 in the same area.

The Green Party, by the way, despite failing to have any of its candidates elected, ended the year with $30,000 in the bank and carried a surplus for the year of $6,300.

The B.C. Conservative Party failed to file its report by the March 31 deadline.

Andrew MacLeod is The Tyee’s Legislative Bureau Chief in Victoria. Reach him here.

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