Electoral Council fines Frans Richardson’s USpPOSTED: 06/1/15 10:59 PM
St. Maarten – The Electoral Council has fined Frans Richardson’s United St. Maarten party (USp) for failing to submit financial reports. The fine is 1,000 guilders for each day the violation continues, with a maximum of 30,000 guilders.
“Despite numerous reminders before and after the deadline for registered political parties to submit their annual reports before April 1, the United St. Maarten Party (USp) failed to submit its annual report and financial statements. Therefore, USP has not complied with one of the most important legal obligations of political parties stipulated in the National Ordinance on Registration and Finances of Political Parties,” the Electoral Council stated in a press release issued last night.
On May 19, the council sent a letter to USp-leader Frans Richardson and its board informing them that the Electoral Council was considering to issue an order under penalty as is stipulated in Article 44 of the National Ordinance. The council granted USp the opportunity to respond to its order no later than Wednesday, May 27 and to submit its annual report no later than Friday, May 29.
The council also warned the party in the letter that failure to do so would result in a penalty of 1,000 guilders for each day the violation continues, with a maximum of 30,000 guilders. “In view of the fact, that USp did not respond to the letter nor did it submit the annual report by the deadlines indicated, the Electoral Council has no other option but to impose the sanction stipulated in the aforementioned National Ordinance,” the press release states. “Consequently, the Electoral Council informed the USp on May 29 that the order under penalty has commenced on Saturday, May 30.”
Political parties, that submitted their annual report and financial statements by April 1, 2015 without the auditor’s report, have been requested by the Electoral Council to submit the required auditor’s report and in some cases additional financial information to the Electoral Council by June 4, 2015.
During its review of the donation registrations of political parties, the Electoral Council noted that several parties received an excess of what is legally allowed in donations. Both the donors who exceeded the donation limit and the parties will be informed about this matter within short. The parties will be requested to return to the donors the excess amount received, as is stipulated by law, and submit evidence thereof to the Electoral Council.