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LABOR REFERS NATIONAL PARTY DONATIONS TO ELECTORAL COMMISSION

Written by City Reporter

LABOR REFERS NATIONAL PARTY DONATIONS TO ELECTORAL COMMISSION

NSW Labor has referred a number of political donations received by the NSW National Party to the NSW Electoral Commission to investigate whether they were illegal.

Between 2013 and 2018, the NSW National Party received donations from a number of individuals and corporations with close links to property developers.

The donations came to light in a call for papers that revealed lobbying on the Koala SEPP on behalf of developers.

It follows revelations in Parliament last week that the Nationals Member for Myall Lakes made representations to the Planning Minister on behalf of one Coalition donor, whose company owns land which forms part of a multi-million dollar development in Taree.

NSW Labor Leader Jodi McKay said:

“Labor has serious concerns about a number of donations received by the National Party from individuals with close links to property developers.

“We called on the National Party to explain these donations but instead they’ve gone into hiding.

“The community needs to know that National Party members are acting lawfully and appropriately.

Under NSW electoral laws, political parties are prohibited from receiving political donations from property developers.

At the time the donations were made, knowingly accepting a donation from a property developer was an offence punishable with a maximum fine of $44,000 and/or 2 years’ imprisonment.

The Shadow Environment Minister Kate Washington said the National Party could not hide from these concerning allegations.

“Property developers cannot donate to political parties for good reason – it’s so developers can’t influence Government decision making in order to enrich themselves. Put simply, the laws are in place to prevent corruption,” Ms Washington added.

“The National Party has refused to explain these donations, so Labor has referred the matter to the Electoral Commission for investigation.”

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City Reporter