Simplify Political Campaign Expenses returns

The requirements on political parties to submit reports regarding their expenditure is hideously complex. Far too much information is required. Evidence from local govt offices indicate that boxes of material submitted by local parties sit on shelves in City Halls for months without ever being opened or consulted, not even by the chief electoral officer. Multiple expenses returns also have to be made, with different categorizations, depending upon the body to be submitted to. This just creates work for no end. It also creates the need to employ a band of people to explain what all the regulations mean, to party activists who are by and large, and inevitably, amateurs. A simple one-figure number should suffice, challengeable by a suitable mandate. Indeed a single figure could be easily published on a web-site, whereas expenses returns are only available in person at City Hall.

Expenses less than 10% of the maximum permitted figure should not have to submit a report at all.

Concentration should instead be on political donations, since parties cannot spend what they do not receive.

Why does this idea matter?

The growth of democracy is hampered by such overburdening. Time is wasted in details, time better used to interact with the public. Equally, the nerdish behaviour required to complete such expenses returns permeates a necessary nerdishness into the activist base as a whole, something which is wholly repellent to the average voter.

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