30 January 2009
The 2007-08 annual financial disclosure returns from political parties, associated entities, donors, and people who engage in political expenditure will be made available for public inspection from 9am (AEDST) on Monday 2 February 2009.
The annual returns will be available on the Australian Electoral Commission's (AEC's) website at www.aec.gov.au.
The website provides for some analysis of the information in the returns as well as images of the original returns. Improvements to the website will include a data export function to enable users to undertake additional analysis of data. Information on funding and disclosure is available in handbooks at www.aec.gov.au/Parties_and_Representatives/index.htm.
The AEC's subscriber update service allows for people to be advised when late returns are received and updates are made to the website. Subscribe to the service online at http://apps.aec.gov.au/subscribe/.
Below is a fact sheet providing details of the basic disclosure requirements.
Australian Electoral Commission
02 6271 4415
0413 452 539
The Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 requires that registered political parties, associated entities, donors to registered political parties and people who engage in political expenditure furnish returns to the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) each financial year.
These returns are made public in February the following year.
Political parties must submit returns containing the following information:
Associated entities must submit returns containing the following information:
Where the sum of a donor's contributions to a political party is more than the threshold, the donor must submit a return that details:
Note that receipts include 'gifts' (donations) and other receipts such as returns on investments or sales of assets. Parties and associated entities are asked to distinguish between 'gifts' and other receipts in their returns.
Note also that donors are not required to make a return where they have received some consideration for their 'gift'. Most usually, this involves the provision of a meal or a networking opportunity at a fund raiser.
Where a person has made expenditure on the following activities the sum of which is in excess of the threshold, they must complete a return detailing expenditure in each of the activities, if any:
Where a person is required to lodge a political expenditure return, and that person received a gift or gifts in excess of the threshold that went towards this expenditure, the person must disclose the sum of the gift, the source of the gift and the date on which the gift was made.
Note: The threshold for the 2007-08 financial year returns was 'more than $10 500'. The threshold is indexed and is adjusted on 1 July of each financial year.
For more information visit www.aec.gov.au/Parties_and_Representatives/index.htm