The Andrews Labor Government will introduce the strictest and most transparent political donation laws in Australia – taking big money out of politics for good.
These laws will put an end to individuals and corporations attempting to buy influence in politics.
They will ban foreign donations, eliminate large political donations, and ensure real time disclosure of all small donations to political parties and other campaigners or fundraisers.
Key points of the new donation reforms:
- Big donations – BANNED
Donations will be capped at $4,000 over four years, completely eliminating large donations to political parties, associated entities, and third party campaigners.
- Secret donations – BANNED
The disclosure limit will be reduced from $13,500 to $1,000 per financial year, and all donations will be reported online within three weeks.
- Foreign donations – BANNED
All donations from foreign corporations and foreign nationals will be banned. Dual citizens, Australian Residents or companies with an ABN will be subject to the new regular rules.
Why are these changes needed?
Victoria’s current donation laws are based on the national ones, which means that multi-national corporations and vested interests can donate millions to political parties.
For example, the biggest donations in history have been $1.75 million given by Malcolm Turnbull to the Liberal Party in 2016, and $1.6 million from a businessman to the Greens Party in 2010.
The public often rightly asks what donors are getting in return for these large sums.
Under the Andrews Labor Government’s new rules, any donation above $4,000 per four year term will be banned.
Currently, donations often aren’t made public for up to two years. Our rules will require real-time disclosure online, so the public knows exactly who’s donating, when, and to who.
What’s covered by the new laws?
All political parties will be covered by the laws, with harsh penalties for non-compliance.
Bodies set up to fundraise for political parties will be covered by the rules.
Third-party campaigners will also be covered, including trade unions, industry bodies, and independent organisations involved in Victorian political campaigning.
Membership and affiliation fees from or to industry bodies, political parties, or trade unions will not be covered, but fees above $1,000 per financial year will need disclosing in an annual return.
Money raised for non-political purposes, for instance by a trade union or industry body for training programs or philanthropic reasons, will not be capped.
These reforms will be in place by the next election, subject to support of the Liberal and Greens Parties in the Victorian Parliament.