Election funding is available in an election to registered political parties and non-party candidates if they meet the required criteria.
- A registered political party is eligible to receive election funding for the votes obtained by its endorsed candidates who together polled at least 4% of the total number of formal first preference votes cast in an electorate. For the purpose of determining the funding entitlement, a vote for a party candidate is taken to be cast for the party and not the candidate. The payment is made to the registered officer of the party.
- A non-party candidate is eligible to receive election funding if he or she polls at least 4% of the total number of formal first preference votes cast in the relevant electorate. The payment is made to the candidate.
For the 15 October 2016 election, the rate was $800 cents per eligible vote. This increase in the public funding rate was enacted by the Electoral Amendment Act 2015.
For elections held after the 2016 election, the amount each vote is worth in election funding will be worked out according to the formula set out in section 207 of the Electoral Act 1992. The rate is calculated twice each year by multiplying the previous rate by the all groups consumer price index number (being the weighted average of the 8 capital cities) for the September and March quarters, and applies for a period of six months ending 30 June and 31 December, respectively.
The amount that applies for the January 2017 to June 2017 quarter is 808.872 cents per eligible vote.
No party or candidate is obliged to accept public funding.
Election funding is a direct payment scheme. There is no requirement for any eligible political party or non-party candidate to lodge a claim for their election funding entitlement. The ACT Electoral Commission will automatically pay those eligible their entitlement once the voting figures are finalised.
Details of amounts paid to candidates and parties are available from the ACT Electoral Commission’s annual reports.
Further information can be obtained by contacting Elections ACT on 02 6205 0033.