MetroVan Independent News August 2015

August 2015 Spids belie fortaleza, ufcabc claim The star experience Songwriting winners President & Founding Director of SPIDS, Narima Dela Cruz, clarifies the facts and clears up the speculations. The first of its kind in BC, The Star Experience unearthed musical empowerment and inspiration amongst teen songwriters. >opinion PAge 6 >Entertainment PAge 12 Vol. 1 No. 5 METROVAN INDEPENDENT MEDIA Canada’s longest, most expensive federal elections just begun Is the Reyfort Media Group trying to use a ghost association? By Steve Marshall By the MetroVan Independent News Team Prime Minister Stephen Harper on Sunday, August 2, visited Governor General David Johnston and asked that Parliament be dissolved and a writ of election issued. At 10:15, Harper announced in a press conference that the election will take place on October 19. The campaign that has now begun will last 11 weeks or 78 days, the longest Canadian elections since 1872. The limit to party spending during an election used to be $25 million. But with Conservative changes to the election Act in @MetroVanNews > NEWS page 3 > Opinion page 2 Photo by Diones Lago 2015 Celebration of Lights in Vancouver. Connect with us: representation in the House of Commons spent a combined total of $66.5 million and were collectively reimbursed $33.2 million from the public’s money. According to currently published spending limits for a 37-day campaign period, the combined spending limit for 338 candidates of a political party is $34.5 million or an average per riding of $102,000. But with Harper’s 78-day campaign, this figure increases by $37.4 million or a total of $71.9 million. The spending limit per candidate soars to over $212,000. The United Filipino Canadian Association of BC appears to be in part a ghost paper organization that does not represent many Filipino associations or groups in British Columbia. It has for some of its officer’s or members notorious personalities, some involved in swindling and other suspicious activities, against hapless Filipino-Canadians. Yet, they claim to represent all Filipino groups in this province, an outright lie if one asks people active in these associations. There is a standard but questionable practice in the Philippines where people of ill-repute organize ghost associations to attract politicians and political parties into financially supporting them in exchange for a glowing endorsement. Ironically, Rey Fortaleza has been recruited recently into becoming an active member of Harper’s Conservative Party which puts into question his integrity as a former leftist activist and neutrality as a newspaper publisher. The Tories probably thought he was legitimate ethnic media. His publications are now littered with Conservative propaganda. He is likewise actively supporting a candidate that allows Cyber-Bullying on his Facebook wall trying to land a seat as a Member of Parliament. This is the second time Rey Fortaleza, the publisher of the Philippine Asian News Today (PNT) (Reyfort Media Group) included my wife Luisa Marshall, myself or one of our businesses on his front page PNT newspaper with confusing, misleading, self-serving headline titles that appear to attempt to harm our reputation although he failed to back up his claims with facts. 2013, overall party spending limit amounted to $675,000 for each day over the minimum 37-day campaign period. An 11-week campaign therefore allows each party to spend $52.6 million. Contrary to Harper’s claim that political parties will pay for their own campaigns, the parties who receives two percent of the national vote are publicly subsidized. They will be paid 50 percent of their expenses from tax money or public funds. Each party will be eligible for a subsidy of $26 million each. In the May 2011 federal election, political parties with