Media advice: 2015 Canning by-election financial disclosure returns to be published on Monday 7 March

Updated: 25 February 2016

The 2015 Canning by-election financial disclosure returns from candidates and election donors will be released for public inspection by 9am (AEST) on Monday 7 March 2016.

The election returns will be available on the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) website at http://electiondisclosures.aec.gov.au. The AEC's election returns system will provide images of the original returns, data from the returns and some analysis. It also includes a data export function to enable users to undertake additional analysis of data.

Editors' notes: 'Getting ready for the release'

  • Members of the media not familiar with the election returns system on the AEC website at http://electiondisclosures.aec.gov.au are encouraged to view the site ahead of time (until the release date the system will only have information for previous elections).
  • Any questions on the navigation of the election returns system should be directed to the AEC's funding and disclosure helpdesk on 02 6271 4552.
  • Further information on the financial disclosure scheme can be found on the AEC website at http://www.aec.gov.au/Parties_and_Representatives/index.htm

Financial disclosure facts

The Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 requires candidates, Senate groups and donors to furnish financial disclosure returns to the Australian Electoral Commission (AEC) covering each election.

These returns are made public 24 weeks after polling day in the relevant election.

Candidates and Senate groups must submit returns containing the following information:

  • the total sum of gifts received during the reporting period;
  • the total number of persons who made gifts to them during the reporting period;
  • the sum and source of all gifts over the threshold; and
  • details of expenditure in each of the activities, if any:
    • public expression of views on a political party, candidate in an election, member of the Federal Parliament or an issue in a Federal election by any means;
    • printing, production, publication, distribution or broadcast of any material that is required by section 328 or 328A of the Commonwealth Electoral Act 1918 or subclause 4(2) of schedule 2 to the Broadcasting Services Act 1992 to include an authorisation; and
    • carrying out opinion polling or other research relating to a Federal election or the voting intentions of electors.

Where the sum of a donor's contribution to a candidate or Senate group is more than the threshold, the donor must submit a return that details:

  • the sum and details (date and recipient of the donation) of each 'gift'; and
  • the sum and details of any 'gifts' received by the donor that have been passed on to a candidate or Senate group, or to another donor for the purposes of being passed on to a candidate or Senate group.

Candidates and Senate groups not endorsed by a political party must disclose the total donations received and the sum and source of donations over the threshold, as well as expenditure in the categories above. Gifts received by candidates and Senate groups that are endorsed by a political party will be reported in the political party return for the 2015–16 financial year.

Note: The threshold for the 2015 Canning by-election was 'more than $13 000'. The threshold is indexed and is adjusted on 1 July each year.