Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Bill - continued        House of Lords

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  PART X
  MISCELLANEOUS AND GENERAL
 
Overseas electors
Reduction of qualifying period for overseas electors.     141. In each of the following provisions of the Representation of the People Act 1985 (as amended by the Representation of the People Act 2000), namely-
 
 
    (a) section 1(3) and (4) (conditions to be satisfied by British citizen in order to qualify as overseas elector in relation to parliamentary election), and
 
    (b) section 3(3) and (4) (conditions to be satisfied by peer in order to qualify as overseas elector in relation to European Parliamentary election),
  for "20 years" there shall be substituted "15 years".
 
 
Pre-consolidation amendments
Pre-consolidation amendments.     142. - (1) Schedule 1 to the European Parliamentary Elections Act 1978 (system of election etc.) shall be amended as follows.
 
      (2) In paragraph 5 (disqualification for office of Member of the European Parliament), in sub-paragraphs (4)(a) and (4A)(a), after "section 3" there shall be inserted "or 3A".
 
      (3) In paragraph 6 (judicial proceedings as to disqualification under paragraph 5), in sub-paragraph (1)(b), after "section 3" there shall be inserted "or 3A".
 
 
Election material
Details to appear on election material.     143. - (1) No election material shall be published unless-
 
 
    (a) in the case of material which is, or is contained in, such a printed document as is mentioned in subsection (3), (4) or (5), the requirements of that subsection are complied with; or
 
    (b) in the case of any other material, any requirements falling to be complied with in relation to the material by virtue of regulations under subsection (6) are complied with.
      (2) For the purposes of subsections (3) to (5) the following details are "the relevant details" in the case of any material falling within subsection (1)(a), namely-
 
 
    (a) the name and address of the printer of the document;
 
    (b) the name and address of the promoter of the material; and
 
    (c) the name and address of any person on behalf of whom the material is being published (and who is not the promoter).
      (3) Where the material is a document consisting (or consisting principally) of a single side of printed matter, the relevant details must appear on the face of the document.
 
      (4) Where the material is a printed document other than one to which subsection (3) applies, the relevant details must appear either on the first or the last page of the document.
 
      (5) Where the material is an advertisement contained in a newspaper or periodical-
 
 
    (a) the name and address of the printer of the newspaper or periodical must appear either on its first or last page; and
 
    (b) the relevant details specified in subsection (2)(b) and (c) must be included in the advertisement.
      (6) The Secretary of State may, after consulting the Commission, by regulations make provision for and in connection with the imposition of requirements as to the inclusion in material falling within subsection (1)(b) of the following details, namely-
 
 
    (a) the name and address of the promoter of the material; and
 
    (b) the name and address of any person on behalf of whom the material is being published (and who is not the promoter).
      (7) Regulations under subsection (6) may in particular specify-
 
 
    (a) the manner and form in which such details must be included in any such material for the purpose of complying with any such requirement;
 
    (b) circumstances in which-
 
      (i) any such requirement does not have to be complied with by a person of any description specified in the regulations, or
 
      (ii) a breach of any such requirement by a person of any description so specified is not to result in the commission of an offence under this section by that person or by a person of any other such description;
 
    (c) circumstances in which material is, or is not, to be taken for the purposes of the regulations to be published or (as the case may be) published by a person of any description so specified.
      (8) Where any material falling within subsection (1)(a) is published in contravention of subsection (1), then (subject to subsection (10))-
 
 
    (a) the promoter of the material,
 
    (b) any other person by whom the material is so published, and
 
    (c) the printer of the document,
  shall be guilty of an offence.
 
      (9) Where any material falling within subsection (1)(b) is published in contravention of subsection (1), then (subject to regulations made by virtue of subsection (7)(b) and to subsection (10))-
 
 
    (a) the promoter of the material, and
 
    (b) any other person by whom the material is so published,
  shall be guilty of an offence.
 
      (10) It shall be a defence for a person charged with an offence under this section to prove-
 
 
    (a) that the contravention of subsection (1) arose from circumstances beyond his control; and
 
    (b) that he took all reasonable steps, and exercised all due diligence, to ensure that that contravention would not arise.
      (11) In this section-
 
  "election material" has the meaning given by section 85(3);
 
  "print" means print by whatever means, and "printer" shall be construed accordingly;
 
  "the promoter", in relation to any election material, means the person causing the material to be published;
 
  "publish" means make available to the public at large, or any section of the public, in whatever form and by whatever means.
 
 
Broadcasting during election period
Broadcasting of local items during election period.     144. For section 93 of the Representation of the People Act 1983 there shall be substituted-
 
 
"Broadcasting of local items during election period.     93. - (1) Each broadcasting authority shall adopt a code of practice with respect to the participation of candidates at a parliamentary or local government election in items about the constituency or electoral area in question which are included in relevant services during the election period.
 
    (2) The code for the time being adopted by a broadcasting authority under this section shall be either-
 
 
    (a) a code drawn up by that authority, whether on their own or jointly with one or more other broadcasting authorities, or
 
    (b) a code drawn up by one or more other such authorities;
  and a broadcasting authority shall from time to time consider whether the code for the time being so adopted by them should be replaced by a further code falling within paragraph (a) or (b).
 
      (3) Before drawing up a code under this section a broadcasting authority shall have regard to any views expressed by the Electoral Commission for the purposes of this subsection; and any such code may make different provision for different cases.
 
      (4) The Independent Television Commission and the Radio Authority shall each do all that they can to secure that the code for the time being adopted by them under this section is observed in the provision of relevant services; and the British Broadcasting Corporation and Sianel Pedwar Cymru shall each observe in the provision of relevant services the code so adopted by them.
 
      (5) For the purposes of subsection (1) "the election period", in relation to an election, means the period beginning-
 
 
    (a) (if a parliamentary general election) with the date of the dissolution of Parliament or any earlier time at which Her Majesty's intention to dissolve Parliament is announced,
 
    (b) (if a parliamentary by-election) with the date of the issue of the writ for the election or any earlier date on which a certificate of the vacancy is notified in the London Gazette in accordance with the Recess Elections Act 1975, or
 
    (c) (if a local government election) with the last date for publication of notice of the election,
  and ending with the close of the poll.
 
      (6) In this section-
 
  "broadcasting authority" means the British Broadcasting Corporation, the Independent Television Commission, the Radio Authority or Sianel Pedwar Cymru;
 
  "candidate", in relation to an election, means a candidate standing nominated at the election or included in a list of candidates submitted in connection with it;
 
  "relevant services"-
 
 
    (a) in relation to the British Broadcasting Corporation or Sianel Pedwar Cymru, means services broadcast by that body;
 
    (b) in relation to the Independent Television Commission, means services licensed under Part I of the Broadcasting Act 1990 or Part I of the Broadcasting Act 1996; and
 
    (c) in relation to the Radio Authority, means services licensed under Part III of the Broadcasting Act 1990 or Part II of the Broadcasting Act 1996."
 
Enforcement of Act
General function of Commission with respect to monitoring compliance with controls imposed by the Act etc.     145. - (1) The Commission shall have the general function of monitoring compliance with-
 
 
    (a) the restrictions and other requirements imposed by or by virtue of Parts III to VII; and
 
    (b) the restrictions and other requirements imposed by other enactments in relation to-
 
      (i) election expenses incurred by or on behalf of candidates at elections, or
 
      (ii) donations to such candidates or their election agents.
      (2) Subsection (1)(b) does not apply in relation to local government elections in Scotland unless and to the extent that the Scottish Ministers by order so provide.
 
      (3) For the purposes of subsection (2), the reference in subsection (1)(b) to any enactment shall include a reference to any enactment comprised in or in an instrument made under an Act of the Scottish Parliament.
 
      (4) Section 156(5) shall apply to an order made by the Scottish Ministers under subsection (2) as it applies to an order made by the Secretary of State under this Act and the reference in that section to enactments shall include a reference to any enactment comprised in or in an instrument made under an Act of the Scottish Parliament.
 
      (5) The power of the Scottish Ministers to make an order under subsection (2) shall be exercisable by statutory instrument subject to annulment in pursuance of a resolution of the Scottish Parliament.
 
      (6) The Scottish Ministers shall reimburse the Commission for any expenditure incurred by them which is attributable to the exercise of any function conferred by virtue of an order made under subsection (2).
 
      (7) In this section and sections 146 and 148-
 
  "election" means a relevant election for the purposes of Part II;
 
  "election agent" includes a sub-agent.
 
Supervisory powers of Commission.     146. - (1) The Commission may by notice require the relevant person in the case of any supervised organisation or individual (or former supervised organisation or individual)-
 
 
    (a) to produce, for inspection by the Commission or a person authorised by the Commission, any such books, documents or other records relating to the income and expenditure of the organisation or individual as the Commission may reasonably require for the purposes of the carrying out by them of their functions, or
 
    (b) to furnish the Commission, or a person authorised by the Commission, with such information or explanation relating to the income and expenditure of the organisation or individual as the Commission may reasonably so require,
  and to do so within such reasonable time as is specified in the notice.
 
      (2) The Commission, or a person authorised by the Commission, may-
 
 
    (a) make copies of, or records of any information contained in, any books, documents or other records produced under subsection (1)(a);
 
    (b) make copies or records of any information or explanation furnished under subsection (1)(b).
      (3) A person authorised in writing by the Commission may, for the purposes of the carrying out by the Commission of their functions, enter at any reasonable time premises occupied by a supervised organisation or individual and having entered any such premises may-
 
 
    (a) inspect any books, documents or other records relating to the income and expenditure of the organisation or individual, and
 
    (b) make copies of, or records of any information contained in, any such books, documents or other records.
      (4) Where any such records as are mentioned in subsection (1) or (3) are kept in electronic form, then-
 
 
    (a) the power of the Commission under subsection (1) to require any such records to be produced for inspection includes power to require a copy of the records to be made available for inspection in legible form (and subsection (2)(a) shall accordingly apply in relation to any copy so made available); and
 
    (b) the power of any person ("the inspector") under subsection (3) to inspect any such records includes power to require any person on the premises in question to give the inspector such assistance as he may reasonably require to enable him-
 
      (i) to inspect and make copies of the records in legible form or to make records of information contained in them, or
 
      (ii) to inspect and check the operation of any computer, and any associated apparatus or material, that is or has been in use in connection with the keeping of the records.
      (5) A person commits an offence if he fails, without reasonable excuse, to comply with any requirement imposed under this section.
 
      (6) A person commits an offence if he intentionally obstructs a person authorised as mentioned in subsection (3) in the carrying out of that person's functions under that subsection.
 
      (7) Subject to subsection (8), subsection (1) shall apply in relation to-
 
 
    (a) a regulated donee (or former regulated donee), or
 
    (b) a person who is (or has been) a candidate at an election (other than a local government election in Scotland) or the election agent for such a candidate,
  as it applies to a supervised organisation or individual (or former supervised organisation or individual); and subsections (2), (4) and (5) apply accordingly.
 
      (8) The powers conferred by virtue of subsection (7) may only be exercised by the Commission (or, as the case may be, by a person authorised by them) for or in connection with obtaining-
 
 
    (a) such information or explanations relating to the income and expenditure of regulated donees in connection with their political activities as the Commission reasonably require for the purpose of monitoring compliance on the part of regulated donees with the requirements imposed by or by virtue of Schedule 7, or
 
    (b) such information or explanations relating to the income and expenditure of candidates within paragraph (b) of that subsection and their election agents as the Commission reasonably require for the purpose of monitoring compliance on the part of such candidates and their agents with restrictions and other requirements falling within section 145(1)(b),
  as the case may be.
 
      (9) In this section-
 
  "regulated donee" and "political activities", in relation to a regulated donee, each have the same meaning as in Schedule 7;
 
  "relevant person", in relation to a supervised organisation or individual, means-
 
 
    (a) in the case of an organisation, any person who is or has been the treasurer or another officer of the organisation, and
 
    (b) in the case of an individual, that individual;
  "supervised organisation or individual" means-
 
 
    (a) a registered party or (in the case of such a party with accounting units) the central organisation of the party or any of its accounting units,
 
    (b) a recognised third party (within the meaning of Part VI), or
 
    (c) a permitted participant (within the meaning of Part VII).
Civil penalty for failure to deliver documents etc.     147. - (1) This section applies where-
 
 
    (a) the requirements of section 31(4) or 34(3) are not complied with in relation to any notification required to be given by the treasurer or (as the case may be) registered leader of a registered party;
 
    (b) the requirements of section 45(1) or (2) are not complied with in relation to any statement of accounts, notification or auditor's report relating to a registered party or any accounting unit of such a party;
 
    (c) the requirements of section 65(1) or (2) are not complied with in relation to any donation report relating to a registered party;
 
    (d) the requirements of section 74(6) are not complied with in relation to any notification required to be given by the treasurer of a registered party;
 
    (e) the requirements of section 82(1), (2) or (3) are not complied with in relation to any return or auditor's report relating to a registered party;
 
    (f) the requirements of section 98(1), (2) or (3) are not complied with in relation to any return or auditor's report relating to a recognised third party (within the meaning of Part VI); or
 
    (g) the requirements of section 122(1), (2) or (3) are not complied with in relation to any return or auditor's report relating to a permitted participant (within the meaning of Part VII).
      (2) In a case where this section applies, the relevant organisation is liable to a civil penalty under this section.
 
  This is in addition to any criminal liability of any person under any other provision of this Act.
 
      (3) The amount of the penalty shall be determined by reference to the length of the period between-
 
 
    (a) the end of the period within which-
 
      (i) the notification mentioned in subsection (1)(a) or (d) was required to be given to the Commission, or
 
      (ii) the document mentioned in subsection (1)(b), (c), (e), (f) or (g) was required to be delivered to them,
 
    as the case may be, and
 
    (b) the day on which the requirements are complied with,
  and shall be so determined as follows:-
 
 
 
Length of period
 
Penalty
 
Not more than 3 months.
 
£500
 
More than 3 months but not more than 6 months.
 
£1,000
 
More than 6 months but less than 12 months.
 
£2,000
      (4) If the requirements are not complied with by the end of the period of 12 months after the end of the period referred to in subsection (3)(a), a penalty of £5,000 is payable-
 
 
    (a) in respect of that period of 12 months, and
 
    (b) in respect of each subsequent period of 12 months during any part of which the requirements are not complied with.
      (5) Any penalty imposed by this section-
 
 
    (a) shall be recoverable in proceedings brought by the Commission as a debt due to them; and
 
    (b) once so recovered, shall be paid by them into the Consolidated Fund.
      (6) Where the relevant organisation is an unincorporated association, any such penalty shall be paid out of the funds of the organisation.
 
      (7) In the application of this section in relation to any such document as is mentioned in subsection (1)(b)-
 
 
    (a) subsection (3)(a) shall be read as referring to the end of the relevant period within the meaning of section 47 or the period specified in paragraph 8(2)(b) of Schedule 5 (as the case may be); and
 
    (b) in the case of a document relating to an accounting unit of a registered party-
 
      (i) subsection (3) shall have effect as if the sums specified in the second column of the table were instead £100, £250 and £500, and
 
      (ii) subsection (4) shall have effect as if the sum there specified were instead £1,000.
      (8) For the purposes of this section "the relevant organisation" is-
 
 
    (a) in a case falling within subsection (1)(a) to (e), the registered party concerned;
 
    (b) in a case falling within subsection (1)(f), the recognised third party concerned; and
 
    (c) in a case falling within subsection (1)(g), the permitted participant concerned.
 
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