A complaint filed with Alberta’s Office of the Ethics Commissioner on Tuesday argues that the president of the Coal Association of Canada contravened the Conflict of Interest Act by lobbying for the coal industry shortly after leaving his post as an Alberta cabinet minister.
Until six months ago, coal lobbyist Robin Campbell served as Alberta’s finance minister. He previously held positions as minister of aboriginal relations and minister of environment and sustainable resource development.
The Conflicts of Interest Act bars a former minister from lobbying any public office holder for 12 months after their last day in office.
Progress Alberta, a non-profit progressive advocacy group, filed the ethics complaint, arguing that Campbell’s activity on behalf of the coal industry may contravene rules in the Lobbyist Act designed to prevent the use of “grassroots communication” to persuade members of the public to pressure public office holders.
Since his controversial appointment as Coal Association president, Campbell has visited communities across Alberta and spoken with media about the lobby group’s positions. At least one media report indicates Campbell called on audiences to get in touch with their elected officials.
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