Wall nixes Sask. Party stipend, says he doesn't want it to 'reflect poorly on the government'

Wall nixes Sask. Party stipend, says he doesn't want it to 'reflect poorly on the government'

Saskatchewan Premier Brad Wall says he's no longer taking a top-up from the Saskatchewan Party.

In addition to his salary, Wall received up to $40,000 from the Saskatchewan Party for the duties he performed as party leader.

Wall was criticized by the NDP for taking a stipend, in part, because some of the money donated to the Saskatchewan Party comes from out of province.

"If there's any misperception at all about what this means and what it doesn't mean, it's just not worth it. I don't want it to reflect poorly on the governmentor the party," Wall said.

The premier said his stipend amounted to roughly less than one per cent of what the party raised in donations.

In November, advocacy group Progress Alberta created a database showing that since 2006, the Saskatchewan Party has accepted more than $3 million in out-of-province corporate donations, with more than $2 million coming from Alberta companies alone.

Following the report, the NDP called for legislation to stop all corporate and union donations. 

Earlier this year, B.C. Premier Christy Clark committed to stopping her top-up of close to $50,000 a year for the Liberal Party.

Clark and Wall are believed to be the last premiers taking a party top-up.

Wall said Clark's decision "caused him to reflect" on his own stipend.

Wotherspoon wants stipend paid back

The NDP again plans to give a second reading of its bill to eliminate corporate and union donations to parties. 

Wall said he won't be supporting the bill because the current system has "served the province well."

NDP interim leader Trent Wotherspoon wants the premier to pay back what he has received from stipends from the Saskatchewan Party.

"You have a premier that's inappropriately taken close to half-a-million dollars — maybe more — for the last decade. At a time where he's attacking the jobs and pay of Saskatchewan people," Wotherspoon said.

"All the questions of influence and who he's really served during that time. It's offensive; it's wrong; it should have never happened."

He added he has no problem with the premier getting reimbursed for mileage or hotel rooms while performing duties as leader of his party.