That the Future Melbourne Committee resolves that: 1. Council assists with the establishment of an online register of campaign finance information related to the 2016 council elections which: a) Is first published immediately after nominations for elections have been announced by the VEC and then is removed from the public website after a council report on all the information declared is noted at the November 29, 2016 council meeting; b) Is acknowledged at the outset represents a voluntary disclosure tool which candidates are encouraged, but not legally bound, to follow; c) Publishes voluntarily supplied information from candidates for election to the City of Melbourne (both leadership teams and council tickets) related to any cash or in-kind campaign donations equal to or above $500 received between April 19, 2016 and Friday, November 18, 2016. d) Updates the information on the register in batches based on information supplied by candidates as at October 3, October 14 and November 11, 2016. e) In each batch of updates, candidates are encouraged to include an additional figure for the total value of contributions below the $500 threshold; f) Discloses the value and nature of any campaign self-funding provided by individual candidates to their leadership or council tickets.2 2. Requests the CEO write to the Local Government Minister seeking permission to publish the register on council’s website or, failing that, write to an independent body (such as the MAV or VLGA) to secure their support in hosting the register in order to comply with council’s election period policy and relevant state legislation. 3. Officers are to prepare a report for the August council meeting outlining the publishing format and template proposed, along with a communications plan for candidates and the proposed host organisation for the public register.This unanimous vote in support of voluntary, comprehensive and timely campaign finance disclosure is unique for local government and a big achievement for The Age after the paper's strong campaign in 2012. However, with council stepping up to run the register, The Age has lost some of its ability to generate exclusives on this issue during the campaign. If Liberal, Green, Labor and independent City of Melbourne councillors can all agree, why on Earth can't the federal parties initiate at least some basic campaign finance reforms rather than retain a system that can delay disclosure for up to 19 months after a donation is made? Over to you Bill and Malcolm, and here’s hoping the media puts some pressure on. As Crikey has documented, the ABC has been woeful in the past when it comes to covering campaign finance, so it is good to hear on the grape vine that Four Corners has gun reporter Quentin McDermott on the job for a piece scheduled to air before the federal election. With the Libs focusing on union governance and Labor countering with attacks on bank governance, surely both parties will have to commit to fixing up their own campaign finance governance before we got to the polls on July 2 ... *Cr Stephen Mayne is chair of the Finance and Governance Committee at City of Melbourne and was not paid for this item
Mayne: senators should reform campaign finance, not just talk about it
Why on Earth can't the federal parties initiate at least some basic campaign finance reforms?