Barry Soper: Public sector pay freeze and election donations

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Manage episode 291888488 series 2882353
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The National Party received nearly $3 million in donations in 2020 - nearly twice the amount donated to Labour.
The Electoral Commission today released the full list of donations made to political parties for the 2020 calendar year.
It shows National on top, taking in just over $2.8m with Labour second with just over $1.5m.
It was quite the drop though for National from the previous election year, 2017, when it raked in over $4.6m as it sought a fourth term in government.
Labour has just a slight dip in donations from 2017, when it received $1.6m.
The Act Party received the third-highest amount in 2020, with just over $1.2m - 50 per cent up on 2017, when it took in slightly above $800,000.
The Green Party had the fourth-highest donations in 2020 with just under $860,000.
The Māori Party received just under $390,000.
Of the parties that did not make it into Parliament, NZ First received the highest amount of donations, with just over $514,000.
Advance NZ received just over $250,000 and the New Conservative party slightly less than $200,000.
Under electoral laws, only donors who give more than $15,000 in a year have to be publicly disclosed.
Donations of more than $30,000 have to be disclosed within 10 working days of receipt, and parties cannot accept anonymous donations of more than $1500, or overseas donations of more than $50.
Of Labour's $1.5m, $731,000 came from donations of less than $15,000 and $770,000 came from donations that were above that figure.
The largest donor was the New Zealand Dairy Workers' Union, which donated $90,000.
A number of other unions, such as the maritime union, the rail union and Etu all donated to Labour, $40,000, $40,200 and $20,000 respectively.
And, among the big-ticket donors is Prime Minister and Labour leader Jacinda Ardern, who donated $17,000 to her party.
The donations are listed as being paid fortnightly through the year and are likely to have been paid through party tithing.
Kelvin Davis, who is a Senior Minister and Labour Deputy Leader, is also on the list and has donated just over $15,000 in the 2020 year.
Other Labour MPs are likely to have made fortnightly donations to the party as well.
However, donations under $15,000 are anonymous so they would not have come up on the list.
Also on the list is former prime minister Geoffrey Palmer, who donated just over $15,000 to the party in June last year.
text by NZ Herald

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