Gift trees can be filled with a variety of times such as lottery tickets, gift cards, money or photos. The instructions are given for the Lottery Tree but suggestions for how to attach money, gift cards, and photos are at the bottom of the instructions. Fill your container with the stones and insert the branch into the center of the stone filled container. Idea: At Christmas time, if giving a lottery or other gift tree, use a branch from an evergreen.
Tip: If the ticket is too large to hang from a branch or if you want it to stay in a particular spot, tape a branch to the back of the ticket.
Elections Alberta has released the financial disclosure forms submitted by candidates who ran in the April 2012 provincial election and some of the disclosure forms reveal some interesting information about how much money was fundraised and spent during the campaign. It appears that the most expensive race between two candidates was in Calgary-Elbow, where Premier Alison Redford faced Wildrose Party challenger James Cole.
In many cases, the Tory MLA’s vastly outspent their main challengers (which in most cases, was the local Wildrose candidate). The award is named after writer Maurice Tougas, who served as the Liberal MLA for Edmonton-Meadowlark from 2004 to 2008.
Note: I had hoped that I would be able to provide a more comprehensive list of numbers from the financial disclosure.

Remember when Alison Redford, et al, were all up in arms because Rob Anderson and Heather Forsyth had $20,000.00 transferred into their campaign accounts from the party?
Oh, btw, with respect to Alison Redford’s campaign expenses, you might have missed the $100 million of taxpayer dollars she promised to the teachers to buy the leadership election. Rob H, she won the nomination and the constituency gave her the $ they had, which they raised to spend on a campaign.
Elections Alberta provides PDFs as soon as the parties and candidates provide them – essentially digital copies of exactly what was provided. But they will, eventually, provide searchable versions as they go through and approve them. My conclusion: Political financial donations should be disclosed in real-time (whether it is a one-party petrostate or otherwise). Reclusive billionaire allegedly donated $430,000 to PC Party, making a strong case for finance reform. Having an even amount of ribbon extending on each side of the ticket staple the center of the ribbon to the ticket. The money spent by candidates and political parties in Alberta elections are nowhere near the truckloads being spent south of the border in advance of November’s presidential and senate elections, but some of these numbers demonstrate how pitched some electoral battles were in the recent provincial election. Airdrie MLA Rob Anderson, who crossed the floor to the Wildrose Party in 2010, saw his campaign spend $77,295.20, which dwarfed the $32,411 spent by the campaign of his main challenger Kelly Hegg.

Unfortunately, the unfriendly interfaced used by Elections Alberta on their website did not allow me the time to complete this.
Alberta needs to get back to work and quit the voo doo doll political policies of the last 6 months, E.D.
Although money cannot replace hard-working candidates and dedicated volunteers, it makes available resources that can, in many cases, make a big difference in pushing a candidate to electoral success. Wilson was one of the last Wildrose Party candidates to be nominated and defeated Tory star candidate Farouk Adatia, who outspent the Wildrose challenger $78,347 to $15,358. Rather than transferring the data into easily searchable and useable formats on their website, Elections Alberta provides PDFs of scanned paper forms which were completed in handwriting by the candidate’s Chief Financial Officers (the writing ranges from chicken-scratch to cursive). Less extreme cases took place across central and southern Alberta, where Wildrose candidates were elected in long-time Tory voting constituencies. It is my hope that in the near future, Elections Alberta is able to build a more user-friendly website that allows Albertans to more easily access these important records.
PDFs are very (very) hard to make, and computers confuse me as much as they confuse Elections Alberta.

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