House of Representatives Committees



| Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters

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Report on the funding of political parties and election campaigns

9 December 2011

© Commonwealth of Australia 2011
ISBN 978-0-642-79582-3 (Printed version)
ISBN 978-0-642-79583-0 (HTML version)

View the report as a single document - (PDF 2885KB)


View the report as separate downloadable parts:

Preliminary Pages (PDF 195KB)
 
Chapter 1 Introduction (PDF 64KB)

Scope
Conduct
Report structure

 
Chapter 2 Background (PDF 227KB)

Overview
The rising costs of election campaigning
Federal developments
Committee and related activities
Commonwealth Electoral Amendment (Political Donations and Other Measures) Bills
Electoral Reform Green Paper: Donations, Funding and Expenditure
JSCEM Roundtable on the Green Paper
43rd Parliament reform agreements
State developments
New South Wales
Queensland
Victoria
Australian Capital Territory
International developments
Is further reform needed?
Conclusion

 
Chapter 3 Private funding (PDF 247KB)

Sources of private funding
Is change to the current scheme necessary?
Conclusion
Setting the disclosure threshold
Conclusion
Application of the disclosure threshold
Conclusion
Fundraising events
Conclusion
Classification of receipts
Conclusion
Frequency of reporting
Contemporaneous or continuous disclosure
Donation reports during elections
Six-monthly reporting
Special reporting of large donations
Conclusion
Different reporting obligations for donors and political parties
Conclusion

 
Chapter 4 Options for private funding reform (PDF 185KB)

Donation caps
Conclusion
Bans on types of donations
Corporate donations
Conclusion
Anonymous donations
Conclusion
Limits on donations from individuals
Conclusion

 
Chapter 5 Expenditure (PDF 221KB)

Background
Current arrangements
Improving the current system
Conclusion
Campaign committees lodging returns
Conclusion
Further reform options
Broadcast advertising expenditure
Constitutional issues
Conclusion

 
Chapter 6 Public funding - Administrative funding (PDF 224KB)

Background and current arrangements
The effectiveness of a public funding scheme
Conclusion
Election funding
Increasing the fairness of the public funding system
A higher threshold
Conclusion
A reimbursement scheme
Conclusion
Funding for new political parties
Conclusion
Elected candidates and funding
Conclusion
Payment of election funding
Conclusion
Conclusion

 
Chapter 7 Third parties and associated entities (PDF 225KB)

Current arrangements
Improving the current scheme
An ‘issue in an election’
Opinion polls or other research
Conclusion
Frequency of third party disclosure
Conclusion
Partisan connections of third parties
Conclusion
Disclosure threshold for third parties
Conclusion
Disclosure rules for donors to third parties
Conclusion
Further reform options
Caps on third party expenditure
Caps on donations to third parties
Conclusion
A third party registration scheme
Conclusion
Definition of associated entity
Conclusion

 
Chapter 8 Compliance (PDF 181KB)

Improving the current system
Administrative penalties
Strengthening current penalties
Conclusion
Compliance review powers
Conclusion
Further reform options
Proactive enforcement
Conclusion

 
Chapter 9 Relationships between federal, and state and territory arrangements (PDF 105KB)

Background
Support for harmonisation
Key issues
Constitutional and federalism issues
Options for reform
Conclusion

 
Chapter 10 Other issues (PDF 99KB)

Administrative body for funding and disclosure
Conclusion
Internal rules for corporate donations
Conclusion

 
Dissenting report – The Hon. Bronwyn Bishop MP, The Hon. Alex Somlyay MP, Senator Scott Ryan, Mr Dan Tehan MP and Mr Darren Chester MP (PDF 220KB)

Introduction
The Disclosure Threshold
Circumvention of Disclosure Laws
Changing the definition of ‘gift’
Tax deductibility and the inconsistency of public 'funding'
Membership and Donations
Third Parties
Summary

 
Dissenting report – Senator Lee Rhiannon, The Australian Greens (PDF 117KB)

Summary
Overview
Short term measures
Long term solutions

 
Appendix A—Submissions and Exhibits (PDF 38KB)
 
Appendix B—Hearings and Witnesses (PDF 51KB)
 
Appendix C—Commonwealth disclosure requirements (PDF 35KB)
 
Appendix D—Comparison of Commonwealth, State and Territory schemes (PDF 54KB)
 
Appendix E—Comparison of international political financing schemes (PDF 37KB)
 
Appendix F—Commonwealth Electoral Amendment (Tobacco Industry Donations) Bill 2011 (PDF 59KB)

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