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Party Accounts

Volume 448: debated on Thursday 6 July 2006

To ask the hon. Member for Gosport, representing the Speaker’s Committee on the Electoral Commission what steps the Commission is taking to ensure compliance with the law on publication of party accounts; and how many constituency parties or associations of (a) the Conservative party, (b) the Labour party and (c) the Liberal Democrats complied in the last year for which information is available. (82534)

[holding answer 4 July 2006]: The Commission informs me that it regularly communicates with registered political parties to ensure that both they and their registered accounting units comply with the law on submission of accounts. This includes the provision of information, sending out reminder letters and arranging meetings wherever necessary. Where the Commission feels further action is necessary, officers from the Commission work with individual parties in enhancing their financial reporting systems to improve their ability to comply with the law.

Any registered accounting unit whose gross income or total expenditure in a financial year exceeds £25,000 is required to submit a statement of accounts to the Commission within three months of the year end if these are not required to be audited, and six months if they are. The Commission has no means of knowing, in advance, which accounting units will exceed the £25,000 reporting threshold in any given year.

In the year to 31 December 2004 (the last year for which information is available), the number of constituency parties or associations that submitted accounts were:

Total submitted

Submitted on time

Submitted late

The Conservative party




The Labour party




The Liberal Democrats