profile image

Dermod Travis

Executive Director, IntegrityBC

Dermod Travis is the executive director of IntegrityBC, a non-profit group dedicated to restore a bond between citizens and their elected officials. He has been the executive director of the Canada Tibet Committee from 2007 to 2011, and is the founder of PIRA Communications.

Travis is a former member of Quebec’s Estates General on the Situation and the Future of the French Language and its Comité d’examen sur la langue d’enseignement. He's given guest lectures at the Université de Montréal, Columbia University, Concordia University, Carleton University and McGill University.
Highs And Lows Of The 2017 B.C.

Highs And Lows Of The 2017 B.C. Budget

If last year's provincial budget could be described as "petty" after Finance Minister Mike de Jong doled out an increase in assistance rates for those living with disabilities -- only to claw most of it back by ending the subsidized bus pass program -- this year's budget could best be described as "petulant."
03/02/2017 15:26 EST
Are Christy Clark's Travel Expenses Soaring

Are Christy Clark's Travel Expenses Soaring Sky-High?

News that Premier Christy Clark has spent $500,000 on private jets since assuming office has -- not surprisingly -- raised a few eyebrows. It's a story that has as much to do with the symbolism as it does with the dollars. A political condition that the government seems increasingly tone deaf to as of late.
03/03/2016 15:11 EST
When It Comes To Fundraising, The BC Liberals Are

When It Comes To Fundraising, The BC Liberals Are Hypocrites

Last year, the BC Liberal party was required to return $20,355 in prohibited donations it had collected, including $12,633 from Simon Fraser University, $300 from Vancouver-False Creek Liberal candidate Sam Sullivan's Global Civic Policy Society, and $850 from the Prince George Airport Authority. The NDP didn't report any donation returns in 2012. From 2006 to 2011, the Liberals had to return 22 prohibited donations it received from charities, while the NDP returned two. Such donations are prohibited under both the B.C. Election Act and federal legislation. The Liberals also reported remitting $4,920 to Elections BC in membership fees the party had collected in its 2011 filing, the same year Christy Clark was elected leader. It's an amount that represents an estimated 492 incomplete membership applications.
04/23/2013 12:27 EDT
BC Election 2013: The Confidence

BC Election 2013: The Confidence Gap

The phoney campaign has finally given way to the real thing. The writ is dropped, the legislature is dissolved and politicians are out on the hustings. And as voters know well, that means big, glitzy promises. But imagine promises that wouldn't need sod-turnings or ribbon cuttings? Meaningful promises that every party can sign-on to, because they're about good government, not party ideology.
04/18/2013 12:07 EDT
B.C. Election 2013: Greasing The Party-Political

B.C. Election 2013: Greasing The Party-Political Wheels

British Columbians shouldn't need to pull out their chequebook to talk to their government. Between them, the B.C. Liberals and NDP brought in more than $17 million. The Liberals alone raised $10.15 million, nearly $4 million dollars more than their Ontario cousins did in 2011 and half of what the Conservative party spent in the 2011 federal election campaign.
04/08/2013 05:51 EDT
B.C. Election Campaigns Don't Come

B.C. Election Campaigns Don't Come Cheap

Party leaders will say all the right things to deny the obvious: we're campaigning for the votes of all British Columbians, we don't take any vote for granted, or we're running to win in all 85 ridings. But after all that voter ID, statistical analysis and polling, strategists know very well that there's likely less than 250,000 voters living in less than half of B.C.'s 85 ridings who will actually count on May 14. And the two main parties will fish where the fish are.
02/22/2013 06:06 EST
Mortgaging B.C. One Deal At A

Mortgaging B.C. One Deal At A Time

Legislative oversight is fundamental to good government. And with less and less of it, the government does more and more by decree. B.C. isn't well-served by that. In 2012, the B.C. legislature sat for 47 days. Among its numerous legislative duties: to debate and approve a $44-billion budget. Forty-seven days is simply insufficient to do that and everything else well.
01/24/2013 04:46 EST
How The B.C. Government Is Picking Our

How The B.C. Government Is Picking Our Pockets

Governments can and do cut income tax rates for a variety of political reasons, while simultaneously raising fees on a dizzying array of other services to offset those cuts. Somehow they can do both at the same time with a straight face. A toll here, a casino there and the B.C. government is doing its best to find more-and-more imaginative ways of picking our pockets without hiking income tax rates.
01/17/2013 07:43 EST
B.C. Fiscal Tsunami Comes From Creative

B.C. Fiscal Tsunami Comes From Creative Accounting

B.C.'s budgets are chalk full of household terms like "Notional Allocations to Contingencies." What they are not is an exercise in clarity or brevity. The B.C. government's 2012 budget came in at a mind-numbing 64,000 words — or one-third the length of the Old Testament.
01/11/2013 01:17 EST
B.C. Liberal Party Expenses Out Of

B.C. Liberal Party Expenses Out Of Whack

Sometimes when you want to know how prudent a political party will be with the taxpayer's dime, it doesn't hurt to consider how prudent they are when it comes to spending their own dime at party headquarters. Compared to their counterparts in other provinces, the B.C. Liberal party spends like there's no tomorrow. And it's spending that increasingly points to something ominous: election campaigns that never end.
12/04/2012 12:27 EST
Who Holds Keys To City Hall: Fear Of Nudge Nudge, Wink Wink

Who Holds Keys To City Hall: Fear Of Nudge Nudge, Wink Wink Relations

If voters were under the impression that it's only provincially in B.C. where corporate and union bucks talk tough, think again. Consider how much each candidate running for a mayor's chair in various Lower Mainland municipalities had to raise for their campaign in last year's local elections.
11/14/2012 07:02 EST
Dismal B.C. Voter Turnout In Various

Dismal B.C. Voter Turnout In Various Races

B.C. Liberal party director Mike McDonald made an interesting point on Sunday. Not one to miss an opportunity for a partisan shot given the nature of his political post, McDonald tweeted: "Shocked at low NDP turnout in Fairview. Huge media, high profile candidates, less than 400 voted. NDP support not deep." Despite the dig, McDonald is on to something. But what he's on to isn't pretty and regrettably it ails all political parties in B.C.
10/22/2012 01:52 EDT
B.C. Election Act: Time To Start From

B.C. Election Act: Time To Start From Scratch

When the B.C. Court of Appeal struck down the government's not-so-subtle attempt to stifle citizens with its ill-advised "gag" law this month, it was only a partial victory. Regrettably, the court never had the chance to consider the multitude of contradictions and loopholes that exist in the B.C. Election Act, most of which are the result of shoddy legislative maintenance
10/17/2012 07:39 EDT