The Electoral Commission

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Electoral Commission publishes details of campaigners’ spending at 2011 Wales referendum

Published: 28 Jun 2011

The Electoral Commission, the independent elections watchdog, has today published figures on spending by registered campaigners during the campaign period leading up to the 3 March referendum on the law-making powers of the National Assembly for Wales.

A total of 23 organisations and individuals registered as campaigners with the Commission. We have received returns from all 23, reporting expenditure amounting in total to just over £145,000, on a range of activities and resources, from posters to hiring campaign office space. Those campaigning for a Yes vote reported spending just over £140,000; those campaigning for a No vote reported spending just under £4,000. Two registered campaigners, UNISON and Richard Wayne Jenkins, submitted returns to us after the deadline of 3 June 2011.

The Head of the Electoral Commission’s Wales Office, Kay Jenkins, said, “We are publishing details of spending that campaigners at the referendum were required by law to report. Voters are entitled to know how campaigners spent their money and the Electoral Commission plays a key role in ensuring the process is open and transparent.”

Under the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act of 2000, all groups or individuals who intended to spend more than £10,000 were required to register with the Electoral Commission as registered campaigners. Registered campaigners who spent under £250,000 were obliged to submit their spending returns to the Commission within three months of polling day.

The relevant data from these returns – as submitted to the Commission – is being published online today, bringing together a single online source of information about spending by campaigners at the Wales referendum. We will also use the data we receive to help us ensure that campaigners have complied with the law on referendum spending and donations.

The Electoral Commission will publish its full statutory report on the referendum on the law-making powers of the National Assembly for Wales on Wednesday 13 July 2011. The report will cover all aspects of the referendum.

The Commission will publish details of campaign spending by political parties at the Welsh general election, held on 5 May, on 1 September (£250,000 or less) and 1 December (more than £250,000). Parties that spend up to £250,000 have 3 months after polling day to submit a spending return. Parties that spend more than £250,000 have 6 months after polling day to submit a return. Publication of details of campaign spending at the UK-wide referendum on the Parliamentary voting system, also held on 5 May, follows the same timetable.

For more information

Electoral Commission press office: 029 2034 6810
Out of office hours: 07789 920 414

Notes to editors

  1. The Electoral Commission is an independent body set up by the UK Parliament. Our aim is integrity and public confidence in the UK’s democratic process. We regulate party and election finance, set standards for well-run elections and are responsible for the conduct and regulations of referendums held under the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act (2000).
  2. The rules for campaigners including full details of spending limits can be found on our website.
  3. Full details of all the spending returns and a list of registered campaigners can be found on our website.
  4. Where returns have not been received by the deadline (in this case 3 June 2011) we will assess each potential breach in line with our Enforcement Policy.