NDP to pay $363 for use of caucus pamphlets in campaign

Nova Scotia's New Democratic Party has agreed to pay $363 to Elections Nova Scotia for the use of caucus leaflets — paid by taxpayers — after the election was called on Sept. 7.

Liberal candidate filed complaint with Elections Nova Scotia

New Democrat Leader Darrell Dexter says the party will pay $363 back to Elections Nova Scotia. (CBC)

Nova Scotia's New Democratic Party has agreed to pay $363 to Elections Nova Scotia for the use of caucus leaflets — paid by taxpayers — after the election was called on Sept. 7.

The 220,000 leaflets, which cost approximately $40,000 to print and distribute, were sent out before the election was called but arrived in the mail after New Democrat Leader Darrell Dexter kicked off the campaign.

The violation has to do with the fact some New Democrat candidates — including cabinet minister Sterling Belliveau — were using the caucus pamphlets as campaign material.

On Friday, Dexter brushed off his party's latest admission it violated the province's election laws.

"These were inadvertent violations of the rules of the Elections Act. All of the parties now have instances of that going on with Elections Nova Scotia," he said.

"All of us seek to comply and to be compliant with Elections Nova Scotia of course we do."

Ron Sherrard, a spokesman for the New Democrat campaign, said about 3,600 pamphlets were mistakenly used.

Under the rules governing elections, no caucus office funds are to be spent for campaign material.

Andrew Younger, the Liberal candidate for Dartmouth East, filed a complaint with Elections Nova Scotia, alleging New Democrat candidates were distributing the pamphlet in violation of election rules.

When the complaint was filed, Dexter called it "childish."

"It's just a childish, political undertaking by Mr. Younger and that's all it is," Dexter said last week. "We did everything exactly as we were supposed to and he knows that."

Dexter said Friday he stands by those comments.

With files from The Canadian Press

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