Firms had political donation targets: witness

The president and CEO of the CIMA+ engineering firm took the stand at the Charbonneau Commission Friday, and told of how his firm had to raise $100,000 before the 2003 election for the Quebec Liberals.

Kazimir Olechnowicz says the $100,000 target was set by Marc Bibeau, a former Liberal party bagman and close associate of former premier Jean Charest.

He added that several other firms were given a similar target.

While on the stand, Olechnowicz was presented evidence that CIMA+ employees, and members of their families, donated close to $2.2 million to provincial parties between 1998 and 2011, and that they were "encouraged" to make political donations.

And while employees were allowed to refuse to donate the money, Olechnowicz said, "I certainly didn't want to take that chance. It was like an insurance policy."

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