Reminder from Electoral Council: Political parties have to submit annual reportsPOSTED: 03/12/15 12:41 PM
St. Maarten – All eight registered political parties have to submit their annual report for 2014 to the Electoral Council before April 1, the council stated in a press release. The last day to submit these reports is Tuesday, March 31.
The obligation to submit these reports stems from the national ordinance registration and financing political parties. The reports must contain the composition of the board during 2014, the number of contributing members at the beginning and at the end of 2014, the amount of contribution received during the year and an overview of activities the party carried out.
The annual report must be accompanied by a financial report that should include at least the party’s financial position at the beginning and the end of 2014. Another requirement is a specified statement of income and expenditures, plus an auditor’s report by a registered accountant about the accuracy of the financial report.
Parties must also report donations of 5,000 guilders or more from a source other than an individual donor, the Electoral Council’s press release states. Lastly, parties must report the total amount they received as donations.
Violating the ordinance by not submitting the reports carries a penalty. According to the relevant ordinance, the Electoral Council is authorized to give non-complying parties an order under threat of a penalty. This first measure is designed to annul the violation. If the party fails to comply (or fails to pay the penalty) the electoral council is authorized to collect the money with the assistance of a bailiff. The ordinance does not mention concrete amounts for the penalties, but states that it has to be proportionate to the violation.
Currently, the electoral council is finalizing the review of the registers of donations candidates have submitted for last year’s elections. The review includes the donations-registers of the political parties.