Electoral Funding Bill 2018 - Amendment

23rd May 2018

Mr GREG PIPER ( Lake Macquarie ) ( 17:49 ): I move amendment No. 1 on sheet C2018-050A:

No. 1Act not to apply to local government elections

Page 86, Schedule 2. Insert after line 25:

P art 3 Suspension of application of Act

7 Non-application of Act to local government matters

Despite any other provision of this Act, until the Parliament otherwise provides:

(a)this Act does not apply to any matter relating to or concerning local government elections or elected members of councils (including mayors), and

(b)the Election Funding, Expenditure and Disclosures Act 1981 and the regulations under that Act continue to apply to local government elections and elected members of councils (including mayors) as if that Act had not been repealed.

How nice it is that we are all working together. We do not often see the House working like this. Democracy is a well-oiled machine here. This amendment effectively suspends application of the bill until after the Government has an opportunity to further review and, dare I say, consult on issues relating to local government. I have been considering how we can somehow extricate all the components of the bill that relate to local government. I respectfully say, and most of us here understand, that how members of the community see the operation of elections is significantly different to how local government and State Government elections work.

A local government election will have a number of different entities that have vastly different geographic situations and populations. We can have small councils and mega councils as well as newly merged councils and they have all been given what I believe to be unrealistic caps. They are being treated as though they are similar councils. I hope that is not the intention of the Government. I acknowledge that members of the Joint Standing Committee on Electoral Matters are present in the Chamber. This matter must be revisited. I understand that local governments have not been explicitly consulted on the matter. In the interests of brevity, I made my point in my second reading speech. I ask that the Government throw us a bone and support the amendment.

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