John Winter is the public face of Future Prosperity B.C. Inc., a BC Liberal surrogate that launched an anti-NDP attack campaign on Jan. 10.
But the ex-B.C. Chamber of Commerce head is only one-third of the triumvirate behind the Oct. 6, 2016-incorporated venture aimed at re-electing Premier Christy Clark.
theBreaker has learned that Frank Pasacreta and Jim Laurence are the other directors. You won’t find anything about their past on the Future Prosperity of B.C. Inc. website. That’s because only Winter’s name is disclosed.
Pasacreta spent 20 years with the B.C. Maritime Employers Association, climbing from vice-president of operations to CEO, until retiring in 2007. He also spent a decade as the chair of the province’s Industry Training Authority before Premier Christy Clark replaced him in 2014 with Gwyn Morgan, the ex-chair of scandal-plagued SNC-Lavalin.
On Nov. 30, 2016, Advanced Education Minister Andrew Wilkinson reappointed Pasacreta to the board of the Degree Quality Assessment Board, which vets applications for new post-secondary degrees and decides whether a university can be called a university.
Between 2005 and 2013, Pasacreta donated $237,319 to the BC Liberals via the BCMEA.
Laurence is president and COO at Magil Construction Pacific Inc., the Vancouver arm of the Montreal construction giant. Magil donated $8,528.66 on Dec. 31, 2015.
Bocci aficionado Laurence is better known in local construction circles for chairing the non-union construction lobby Independent Contractors and Business Association of B.C. between 1999 and 2008. He also founded Merit Canada, the national lobby for ICBA and seven other provincial non-union construction associations.
ICBA donated $245,934.50 to the BC Liberals over a decade, of which $47,022 was contributed from 2005 to 2008 during Laurence’s chairmanship.
The address listed for Winter on the corporate registration matches with law firm Fasken Martineau, a $356,760 donor to the BC Liberals between 2005 and 2015.
One name you will find on the Winter, Pasacreta and Laurence company’s SayAnythingJohn.ca website is Shaun Webb, the media relations contact.
Webb worked in North Vancouver Conservative MP Andrew Saxton’s office from 2008 to 2010, managed his 2011 and 2015 campaigns and spent a year as a policy advisor in Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s office. Webb is now employed by the ex-PM’s Harper and Associates Consulting firm, but says he is working on Future Prosperity B.C. Inc. on his own time.
There are no restrictions on election advertising by third parties or registered political parties before the official election period, which is scheduled to begin April 11. The Future Prosperity B.C. Inc. website does not show who is funding its campaign, but it says donations are not tax deductible.
Provincial election day is May 9.