The Greens will introduce legislation to clean up politics in NSW when parliament returns next month. The bill aims to expand the list of prohibited donors to include mining and coal seam gas companies.
The Greens’ proposal will significantly reduce how much money candidates in election campaigns can spend, reduce political donation limits and increase the percentage of public funding.
The Greens are moving, where the government has failed, to reduce the influence of money and vested interests on our political system.
If the expenditure limits are reduced, but public funding is increased, the cost to the taxpayer is small, but the benefits from a cleaner political system are significant.
The Greens will also expand the list of prohibited donors to include mining and coal seam gas companies, companies holding or planning to bid for government contracts, registered clubs and other not-for profit gambling industries.
The mining and coal seam gas industries are significant donors to the Coalition and Labor parties. They continue to have an undue influence over our political system, often against the interests of local communities.
Only this month, it was reported that before the last state election, energy giant AGL gave almost $100,000 to the NSW Labor and Liberal parties while seeking approval to drill 110 coal seam gas wells near Gloucester on the mid-north coast, but only half of those donations were apparently disclosed.
Under the Greens legislation, political donations would be capped at $1,500 to political parties and $500 to candidates. This is down from the current limits of $5000 and $2,000.
The Greens do not accept donations from corporations or unions. Individual supporters fund Greens political campaigns.
Dawn Walker, Greens NSW Upper House candidate