Understanding the New
Annual Advertising Limit
The Elections Finances Act limits the amount political parties — and now candidates — can spend annually on advertising [s.54.1(1)]. However, the annual advertising limit has also been amended so that it is only applicable in the year of a set date election. There is no limit on advertising in a non-election year.
The Limits - for the 2011 set date election
The annual advertising limit for a registered political party is not to exceed $260,388.44.
The annual advertising limit for a candidate is not to exceed $6,249.32.
The annual limits are adjusted for inflation using CPI (Consumer Price Index). The base month for CPI calculations has been changed to June 2008 from June 1996.
Definition of Advertising Expense
For the purpose of the
annual advertising limit
only, the advertising expense definition [s.54.1(6)] was
expanded to include:
- Posters, leaflets, letters, cards, signs and banners;
- Any similar printed material, the purpose of which is to support or oppose, directly or indirectly, a party or candidate.
The Annual Limit vs. the Election Expense Advertising Limit
The annual limit is separate from, and in addition to, the advertising limit within the election expense limit that is in effect during the election period (writ day to election day).
All advertising must be authorized:
- by the party's chief financial officer;
- by the person responsible for the finances of a constituency association; or
- by the candidate's official agent (or the candidate if the OA has not yet been appointed)