Section 149 : Inspection of Commission’s registers etc
297.Subsection (1) provides for public access to the various registers maintained by the Electoral Commission, namely the registers of:
recognised third parties; and
permitted participants in a referendum campaign.
298.Subsection (6) makes similar provision for public access to documents which are required to be deposited with the Commission, namely:
political parties’ annual statements of accounts;
political parties’ returns as to campaign expenditure;
recognised third parties’ returns as to controlled expenditure; and
permitted participants’ returns as to referendum expenses.
299.The Electoral Commission will be required to make the registers and documents available for public inspection during ordinary office hours and, in addition, may make other arrangements for access to their contents (for example, it might make copies of the registers available on the Internet). Section 149, in its application to the register of political parties, replaces section 11 of the Registration of Political Parties Act 1998 which provides for public right of access to the register to be determined by regulations.