Select Committee on Electoral and Political Party Funding

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SpeakersNile Reverend the Hon Fred
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Report: Electoral and Political Party Funding in New South Wales

Reverend the Hon. Fred Nile, as Chair, tabled a report entitled "Electoral and Political Party Funding in New South Wales", dated June 2008, together with transcripts of evidence, tabled documents, correspondence and answers to questions taken on notice.

Ordered to be printed on motion by Reverend the Hon. Fred Nile.

Reverend the Hon. FRED NILE [11.04 a.m.]: I move:
      That the House take note of the report.

This report is released at an important stage in this State against a background of allegations of political corruption and problems in Wollongong City Council. The procedure for public funding and donations to political parties in this State requires an urgent resolution. The key message from the committee's inquiry is that significant reform is needed of the New South Wales electoral funding regime and, in particular, to tighten the regulation of political donations. From many of the 189 submissions the committee received it was clear that reforms are needed urgently to restore community confidence in politicians and the political process. The committee's proposed model entails a radical rewriting of the New South Wales electoral funding scheme. Key provisions of the model are: to ban all political donations by corporations and other organisations, not just developers; to cap individual donations to $1,000; to cap election spending; to make disclosure of donations and election spending more timely and transparent; and to introduce greater policing of the electoral funding scheme, and tougher penalties for non-compliance.

It now rests with the Government to respond to this report. I call on the Government to take strong action to demonstrate its commitment to restoring public faith in the electoral finance regime of New South Wales by implementing the committee's proposed model. That would well and truly declare to the sceptical public that the political parties of New South Wales are not up for sale.

Debate adjourned on motion by Reverend the Hon. Fred Nile and set down as an order of the day for a future day.