Fears proposed ACT electoral funding changes could allow corruption

Removing the cap on political donations in the ACT could lead to corruption, ANU academic Andrew Hughes says.

The ACT Government has announced it wants to scrap the cap on political donations as part of electoral funding changes.

Currently donations which parties and candidates can receive are capped at $10,000 per donor per year.

Andrew Hughes from ANU's Research School of Management said the community deserved to know who was making donations and why.

"What are they getting for their donation? They are not making it because they feel this is a good thing to do out of the bottom of their hearts," he said.

"They're doing this for financial and organisational benefits."

But Attorney-General Simon Corbell said removing the cap would not lessen the strict reporting requirements for donations.

"By abolishing the $10,000 limit on donations the Government is removing an unintended incentive for donors to circumvent the electoral funding laws and therefore reduce transparency," he said.

"Despite those caps being in place, people have worked out ways to circumvent them."

"We have seen experience of this in New South Wales."

Greens describe changes as 'unjustifiable act of self-interest'

Greens Minister Shane Rattenbury has hit out at the Government's proposed changes, describing the proposal as an unjustifiable act of self-interest.

"The deal Labor and Liberal have put together will see them get most of their funding from public expenditure, but they will then also be able to top that up with larger donations overall," he said.

"This is to the benefit of them and will provide a substantial windfall to both Labor and Liberal."

The Government also wants to increase public funding for ACT elections from $2 to $8 per vote.

Mr Rattenbury warned it would cause a net gain for the big political parties.

"It seems quite likely this will be a vote in the Legislative Assembly that goes 16 votes to one with only the Greens looking for a restricted approach to political expenditure," he said.

The changes are expected to pass with the support of the Canberra Liberals.

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