Cash donations above $100 will be banned in NSW as the Government acts to restore the public’s confidence in the integrity of political donations.
Premier Gladys Berejiklian made the announcement on Wednesday, making NSW the first jurisdiction to cap cash donations made to political parties.
“I have been shocked by what has been uncovered at the Independent Commission Against Corruption (ICAC) over the last two weeks,” Ms Berejiklian said.
“This Government has already introduced the strongest donations regime in the nation but it is clear that some will continue to defy the law.
“That is why I am taking strong action to further protect our political processes.
“This simple reform will mean an end to the poor accounting practices, untraceable donations and the anonymous cash that has the potential to mar our political system.
“Given the wide and easy availability of electronic funds transfer systems, there is no good reason for donations to hide behind the anonymity of cash.”
Currently, no single donor may exceed a cap of $6400 a year to a party or group, nor may a donor exceed a cap of $2900 a year to a member, candidate or third-party campaigner.
All political donations of $1000 or more must also be disclosed to the NSW Electoral Commission. These restrictions will remain in parallel with the new cash ban.
“This sends the strongest possible message that donation laws must not be flouted because the only legal donations will be traceable donations,” Ms Berejiklian said.
Legislation to enact the new restrictions will be introduced to Parliament by the end of the year.