A record 19 parties reported donations totalling£10,970,384 for the second quarter:
British National Party £15,870
Christian Peoples Alliance £15,000
Common Good [The] £14,000
Conservative & Unionist Party [The] £3,653,995
Co-operative Party £242,837
Forward Wales £14,463
Green Party £83,435
Labour Party [The] £4,384,153
Liberal Democrats £925,048
Liberal Party [The] £1,640
New Party [The] £90,000
Peace Party Non-violence, Justice Environment [The] £6,000
Plaid Cymru - Party of Wales [The] £94,262
Respect The Unity Coalition £13,000
Scottish National Party £84,660
Scottish Socialist Party £54,396
United Kingdom Independence Party £1,224,479
In addition, a number of donations that should have been reported in previous quarters have been included in the latest returns. The Labour Party reported a late donation of£400, the Liberal Democrats reported late donations totalling£7,608 and United Kingdom Independence Party reported late donations totalling£11,620. The commission will continue to review with the parties the reasons for the late reporting of donations.
More than£100m of reportable donations have been given to registered political parties since the controls under the Poltical Parties, Elections & Referendums Act 2000 (PPERA) came into force on the 16 February 2001.
1. The Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000 requires registered political parties to submit quarterly donation reports to the commission. These reports must include all donations over£5,000 to main political party offices and over£1,000 to constituency or local party offices. A person commits an offence if they knowingly or recklessly make a false declaration with regard to the receipt of donations during a particular quarter.
2. PPERA came into force on the 16 February 2001 and gives the commission authority to oversee new controls on donations to political parties. Parties may only accept donations of over£200 if they are deemed 'permissible' by PPERA. 'Permissible' donors includes individuals who are listed on the UK electoral register, or companies which are UK registered and carrying out business in the UK. Parties on the Northern Ireland register of political parties are exempt from the donation controls for a period of four years.
3. Failing to submit donations reports can have serious implications:
a. Failure to submit a return in time: a civil offence is committed by the party (s.147(2)) and a criminal offence by the treasurer (s.65(3)).
b. Failure to submit a return that meets the requirements of the PPERA: a criminal offence by the treasurer (s.65(4)).
c. Making a false declaration on a return: criminal offence by the treasurer (s.66(5)).
4. The Electoral Commission is an independent body established by UK Parliament. It aims to ensure public confidence and participation in the democratic process within the United Kingdom through modernisation of the electoral process, promotion of public awareness of electoral matters, and regulation of political parties.