Property developer donation ban re-introduced

Property developer donation ban re-introduced


Tuesday 6th March, 2018

The Palaszczuk Government has re-introduced laws to ban developers from making donations to political parties in parliament today.

Our concerns expressed last year remain unchanged. It is the stance of the UDIA Queensland that all donations to political parties should be banned.

We do not support the discrimination of a particular industry or profession. Many entities, including mining, medical, and infrastructure make financial contributions to political candidates and parties. To exclude only property developers is to besmirch the development industry as a whole.

The Institute would be supportive of a debate on publicly funded elections alongside a broad-based community discussion on how to ensure our political processes maintain the highest standards of integrity, accountability, and transparency.

We support transparency and will continue to advocate for a solution that achieves this without discrimination.

In introducing the Bill today, Minister Hinchliffe stated:

The ban applies to ‘prohibited donors’, defined to include a property developer or any industry representative organisation whose members are mainly property developers.

‘Property developers’ are defined in the bill to be corporations engaged in a business that regularly involves the making of relevant planning applications by or on behalf of the corporation and close associates—such as related corporations, directors and their spouses—of these corporations.

Minister Hinchliffe said the bill represents the first stage of the government’s reform agenda, foreshadowing further reforms aimed at reinforcing integrity, minimising the risk of corruption and providing for increased transparency and accountability at both state and local government levels.

The Bill also outlines significant penalties. The laws would apply from the date the Bill was previously introduced, 12 October 2017. Any unlawful political donations made on or after 12 October 2017 will, on commencement, need to be repaid to the donor within 30 days of commencement.

The Local Government Electoral (Implementing Belcarra) and Other Legislation Amendment Bill was originally introduced late in 2017, but did not pass before the election.

The UDIA Planning and Environment Committee will review the Bill. Any member feedback can be shared with [email protected].