Supplementary Order Paper No 185

No 185

House of Representatives

Supplementary Order Paper

Tuesday, 7 December 2010

Electoral (Finance Reform and Advance Voting) Amendment Bill

Proposed amendments

Metiria Turei, in Committee, to move the following amendments:

Clause 20 (1AA)

To omit “$1,500” and substitute “$1,000” (lines 27 and 28 on page 53)

Clause 21 (1AA)

To omit “$15,000” and substitute “$1,000” (line 2 on page 55).

Clause 21

To omit subclause (1AA) (lines 1 and 2 on page 55).

Clause 21A

To omit this clause (lines 1 to 4 on page 57).

Explanatory note

This Supplementary Order Paper amends the Electoral (Finance Reform and Advanced Voting) Amendment Bill. It amends the current bill so that political parties and candidates must disclose donations that they receive over $1,000. In the current bill, the donation disclosure thresholds have been increased for candidate donations from $1,000 to $1,500, and for party donations from $10,000 to $15,000. This increase effectively means it will be easier for parties to hide where they get their money from. This does not promote transparency or honest politics and could potentially lead to corruption. The public has a legitimate interest in, and a right to know, who is providing significant funding for political parties. The current requirement that parties only disclose donations of $10,000 is too high, this can be seen in the fact that the other parties often report having no donations over this amount. We believe the threshold should be $1,000 for donations to political parties and candidates. Parties are currently required to know and keep records of where they receive donations of over $1,000 from. It is in the interests of democracy that the public has access to this information as well.