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Referendums (Scotland) Act 2020

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Power to require disclosure of documents etc.S

1(1)The Electoral Commission may give a disclosure notice to a person who—S

(a)is, or has been at any time in the period of 5 years ending with the day on which the notice is given, the treasurer or another officer of an organisation that is a permitted participant, or

(b)is an individual who is a permitted participant,

(c)is a person who has made a declaration as a qualifying individual under paragraph 2 of schedule 3 and the Commission have reasonable grounds for believing that the individual is not a qualifying individual,

(d)is a person who has made a declaration as a qualifying body under paragraph 2 of schedule 3 and the Commission have reasonable grounds for believing that the body is not a qualifying body,

(e)is an individual or body that is not a permitted participant and the Commission have reasonable grounds for believing that the individual or body is incurring referendum expenses,

(f)is an individual or body that the Commission have reasonable grounds for believing has received a relevant donation,

(g)is an individual or body that the Commission have reasonable grounds for believing has entered into a regulated transaction,

(h)is an individual or body that the Commission have reasonable grounds for believing is providing goods, services or facilities to a permitted participant or a person mentioned in paragraph (e),

(i)is a body that is not a permitted participant and the Commission have reasonable grounds for believing that the body has published material to which paragraph 28(1) of schedule 3 applies.

(2)In sub-paragraph (1)(f), “relevant donation” includes, in the case of a permitted participant, any donation received at a time before the individual or body became a permitted participant, if the donation would have been a relevant donation had the individual or body been a permitted participant at that time.

(3)In sub-paragraph (1)(g), “regulated transaction” includes, in the case of a permitted participant, any transaction entered into at a time before the individual or body became a permitted participant, if the transaction would have been a regulated transaction had the individual or body been a permitted participant at that time.

(4)A disclosure notice is a notice requiring the person to whom it is given—

(a)to produce for inspection by the Commission, or a person authorised by the Commission, any documents which—

(i)relate to income and expenditure of the organisation or individual in question, and

(ii)are reasonably required by the Commission for the purposes of carrying out their functions under section 14 and schedule 3, or

(b)to provide the Commission, or a person authorised by the Commission, with any information or explanation which relates to that income and expenditure and is reasonably required by the Commission for those purposes.

(5)In the case of a person mentioned in sub-paragraph (1)(c) or (as the case may be) (d), a disclosure notice may also require the person to whom it is given to provide the Commission, or a person authorised by the Commission, with any information or explanation reasonably required by the Commission for the purposes of determining whether the person is a qualifying individual (within the meaning of paragraph 2(3) of schedule 3) or (as the case may be) a qualifying body (within the meaning of paragraph 2(4) of that schedule).

(6)In the case of a person mentioned in sub-paragraph (1)(f) or (as the case may be) (g), a disclosure notice may also require the person to whom it is given to provide the Commission, or a person authorised by the Commission, with any information or explanation reasonably required by the Commission for the purposes of carrying out their functions under Part 5 or (as the case may be) 6 of schedule 3.

(7)In the case of a person mentioned in sub-paragraph (1)(i), a disclosure notice may also require the person to whom it is given to provide the Commission, or a person authorised by the Commission, with any information or explanation reasonably required by the Commission for the purposes of carrying out their functions under paragraph 28 of schedule 3.

(8)A person to whom a disclosure notice is given must comply with the notice within such reasonable time as is specified in the notice.

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