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Election Publications Act 2001


4.Prior to the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000 (“the PPER Act”) there was a long-standing provision in section 110 of the Representation of the People Act 1983 (“the RPA 1983”) requiring material promoting or procuring the election of a candidate to include an imprint detailing the name and address of the printer and publisher of the material. There was no equivalent requirement in respect of national election material. The PPER Act made good this omission both in respect of national election material (section 143) and referendum material (section 126). Paragraph 14 of Schedule 18 to the PPER Act also substituted a new section 110 in the RPA 1983 to replace the requirement to name the “publisher” with a requirement to identify the “promoter”, as defined (ie. the person who caused the material to be published), and the person on behalf of whom the material is being published (ie. the candidate or third party). The new provisions relating to national material use identical terminology.

5.These provisions of the PPER Act were brought into force on 16th February 2001 by means of the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000 (Commencement No.1 and Transitional Provisions) Order 2001 (SI. 2001/222). The Government subsequently received representations from the three main political parties that none of them were in a position to comply fully with the new requirements.  In particular, doing so would require considerable quantities of  election material already printed or commissioned to be abandoned. The Act responds to such representations by rescinding the commencement of section 143 and paragraph 14 of Schedule 18 to the PPER Act and restoring the operation of the old section 110 of the RPA 1983 in relation to material published on behalf of candidates or third parties at local level.

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