Dear Members of Parliament,
Re: Elections Funding, Expenditure and Disclosures Amendment Bill 2014 I write on behalf of the Executive of the NSW Society of Labor Lawyers (Labor Lawyers) to express our concerns about the Elections Funding, Expenditure and Disclosures Amendment Bill 2014 (the Bill), introduced this week.
Our chief concern is that the most recent Bill does not propose any changes to 96D of the Election Funding, Expenditure and Disclosures Act, which was re-inserted into the Act by the passage of legislation earlier this year. We made clear our concerns about s96D in our 12 June 2014 letter to all Members of the Legislative Council. At that point, it was unclear whether the government’s attempt to reinstate s96D in the wake of the High Court’s decision in Unions NSW, was done in ignorance of that decision, or as a deliberate challenge to the High Court’s authority. There can now be no argument that the Government is deliberately ignoring and/or flouting High Court authority, because it proposes to maintain s96D despite having now received advice from numerous sources (including legal experts who addressed the Premier’s Panel) that section 96D is unconstitutional.