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political parties spend big on 2016 act election, splashing $2.54 million

political parties spend big on 2016 act election, splashing $2.54 million News Article With The full text news and with Resource Link at the bottom of the text and you can View this News Article in the source page.

political parties spend big on 2016 act election, splashing $2.54 million

canberra has just run its biggest spending election to date, with the three major parties spending a combined $2.54 million to fight their paigns.

two organi ions, clubs act and the united firefighters union, appear to have spent more than the $40,000 cap and now face an audit by the act electrical commission. so-called "third-party paigners" who spend more than $40,000 face a penalty of twice the overspend.

voters in the act election in october 2016. political parties spent a combined $2.5 million trying to get their vote.
voters in the act election in october 2016. political parties spent a combined $2.5 million trying to get their vote.  p o: karleen minney

clubs act has declared $56,200 in spending on the paign, in its fight against poker machines in the casino. the firefighters union has declared $40,700.

the construction forestry mining and energy union, a powerful player in the act labor party, managed to effectively double its spend by some of the money coming from its training arm, creative safety initiatives. the union spent $38,000 and the training arm $35,000.

asked whether that was within the third-party rules, electoral commission phillip green said it depended on who the "spender" was. he did not elaborate but said all third-party paigners who donated more than $1000 would be audited.


asked why the cfmeu's training arm spent money on election advertisements and other paign material, mr hall said the liberals could not be trusted to maintain safety and training in the construction industry. high-quality training and safety was fundamental to ensure workers returned home to their families, he said.

unions act also effectively had two bites at the cherry, declaring $22,200 of its own spending, with trades hall building, a trust that funds unions act, spending another $37,000.

parties are allowed to spend $40,000 per candidate, giving labor and liberal a maximum of $1 million.

labor spent $985,000, which was $65,000 more than it spent on the last paign in 2012, but well down on its $1.4 million spend-up in 2008.

labor's cause was boosted by anther $250,000 spent by unions. on top of the $73,000 from the cfmeu and its training arm and the $40,700 from the firefighters, spending e from the education union, the public sector union, and the electrical trades union.

the unions made the most significant spending of any third-party paigners, although the clubs also spent big sums on top of what they donated to richard farmer's canberra community voters party. mr farmer's party spent $192,000 on a paign that failed to elect of its candidates.

the vikings club spent $21,000, the ainslie football club $10,000, and the raiders $8000.

the liberals made by far their biggest election spend in act history on a paign they believed might well deliver them government. but despite $962,000 on advertising, polling, brochures and the like, they found themselves back in opposition for the fifth term in a row.

it is the first time, the liberals e close to matching labor's spend. in each of the previous two elections, they spent about $730,000.

the greens, too, entered the big league, spending $321,000 on their october election paign, almost $100,000 more than what they spent in 2012. before that, the party spent about $60,000 or less on paigns.

despite the cap that limits labor and liberal to about $1 million each, spending by canberra's political parties overall has increased markedly since the early days of self-government. in 1995, parties spent a combined total of $321,000. the 2016 spend of $2.54 million is about eight time that amount. in 2012, parties spent just under $2 million.

the biggest advertising spend was on television ads, with labor spending $126,000 and the liberals $283,000.

in print advertising, indian express canberra, based in gungahlin, took about $2000 in advertising from the labor party and $300 from the liberals. the liberals focussed on city news, spending more than $10,000 in advertising with the paper. clubs act also sent its advertising dollar there. labor spent $16,000 with fairfax, publisher of the canberra times, all on digital advertising. the liberals spent $6000.

despite the big spend neither labor or liberal will be much out of pocket after the paign, with each getting more than $700,000 from the taxpayer to help. the act pays $8 a vote to political parties, by far the biggest payment of any jurisdiction in australia.

g hic by markus mannheim