2002 Donation Statements

Donation Statements and Statements of Expenditure of Exchequer funding furnished by political parties for 2002

PART 1. Introduction

Section 4(1) of the Electoral Act 1997 (the 1997 Act) requires the Standards in Public Office Commission (the Standards Commission) to consider every statement and notification furnished to it in relation to political donations and Exchequer funding and, where it considers it appropriate to do so, to furnish a report in writing to the Chairman of Dáil Éireann (Ceann Comhairle) on any matter arising. The Standards Commission considered that, as a matter of public record, it was appropriate to furnish a report.

This report relates to Donation Statements and Statutory Declarations and Statements of Expenditure of Exchequer Funding and Auditors' Reports, in respect of 2002, furnished to the Standards Commission by political parties, pursuant of section 20 and section 24 of the 1997 Act.

The 1997 Act was amended by the Electoral (Amendment) Act, 1998, the Electoral (Amendment) Act, 2001, the Electoral (Amendment) Act, 2002 and the Electoral (Amendment) No. 2 Act, 2002. In this report, reference to the 1997 Act includes reference to any amendments to that Act.

In 2002 the Standards Commission published Guidelines for Political Parties on steps to be taken concerning donations and prohibited donations (December 2002) and Guidelines for Political Parties on Exchequer funding (November 2002).

PART 2. Relevant provisions of the legislation

To assist a better understanding of the statutory requirements, the Standards Commission considers it useful to set out in this part of the report an account of the relevant legislation.

Reports

Section 4 of the 1997 Act provides that the Standards Commission shall consider every Exchequer Expenditure Statement and every Donation Statement furnished to it and, where it considers it appropriate to do so, shall furnish a report in writing to the Chairman of the Dáil on any matter arising in relation to such statements.

Disclosure of donations received by political parties

Section 22(2)(a) provides that a "donation" means a contribution for political purposes and includes money, property, goods, services, etc.

Section 22(2)(c) provides that a donation made to a political party, whether made directly or through an intermediary, is deemed to be a donation to the party if it is made to party headquarters or to any branch or subsidiary of the party, to any candidate of the party at a local election or direct election, to any member of the party who is a member of a local authority, or to any officer, member or agent of the party or of any branch or subsidiary thereof.

It also provides that a donation made to a TD, Senator or MEP will not be regarded as a donation to the person concerned if it is passed on to his or her political party and a written acknowledgement of the donation is received from the party. Such donations will be deemed to have been made to the party.

Section 22(2)(d) provides that the values of donations received from the same person in the same year must be aggregated and, if in excess of €5,078.95, the donations must be disclosed. [A "person" means an individual, a body corporate or an unincorporated body of persons.]

Section 23(1) provides that a political party must not accept, either directly or indirectly, an anonymous donation valued in excess of €126.97. If such a donation is received, it is required to be notified and remitted (or its value remitted) to the Standards Commission not later than 14 days after its receipt.

Section 23A(1) provides that the maximum value of donations which a political party may accept from the same donor in the same year is €6,348.69. Where a donor makes more than one donation to the same party in the same year the values of the donations must be aggregated and treated as a single donation.

Section 23A(2) provides that a political party must not accept a donation of any value from:

- an individual (other than an Irish citizen) who resides outside the Island of Ireland, or

- a body corporate or unincorporated body of persons which does not keep an office in the island of Ireland from which one or more of its principal activities is directed.

Section 23A(5) provides that where a donation is received which is prohibited because its value is over the limit, a political party must notify the Standards Commission within 14 days and remit the donation, or that part of a monetary donation which is over the limit, to the Standards Commission. As an alternative to notifying and remitting the donation, or that part of a monetary donation which is over the limit, to the Standards Commission, a political party must return the donation, or that part of a monetary donation which is over the limit, to the donor and keep a written record of that return for the purpose of its being furnished to the Standards Commission, if required.

Where a donation is received which is prohibited because it is a foreign donation, a political party must notify the Standards Commission within 14 days and must remit the donation to the Standards Commission. As an alternative to notifying and remitting the donation, to the Standards Commission, a political party must return the donation to the donor and keep a written record of that return for the purpose of its being furnished to the Standards Commission, if required.

Section 23B(1) provides that if a political party receives a monetary donation in excess of €126.97, in a calendar year, it must open and maintain an account in a financial institution in the State and must lodge that donation and any further monetary donations, of whatever value, to that account.

Section 23B(3) provides that Donation Statements furnished to the Standards Commission by political parties must be accompanied by a statement provided by the above mentioned financial institution specifying all transactions that have taken place in relation to the account during the year preceding the year in which the Donation Statement is furnished. The Donation Statement must also be accompanied by a Certificate, in a form directed by the Standards Commission, and signed by an officer of the political party, stating that all monetary donations, received during the year were lodged to the account and all amounts debited from the account were used for political purposes. This Certificate must be supported by a Statutory Declaration confirming its accuracy.

Section 24 provides that the appropriate officer of each political party (which is registered in the Register of Political Parties to contest a Dáil or European Parliament election) must furnish a Donation Statement to the Standards Commission not later than 31 March each year. The Donation Statement must show, in relation to the preceding calendar year, whether or not the party received any donations exceeding in value €5,078.95. For each such donation, the value and nature of the donation must be stated together with the name, address and a description of the donor.

Each Donation Statement must be accompanied by a Statutory Declaration that, to the best of the appropriate officer's knowledge and belief, the Donation Statement is correct in every material respect and that he/she has taken all reasonable action in order to be satisfied as to the accuracy of the Donation Statement.

Exchequer Funding of political parties

Section 16 of the 1997 Act defines a "qualified" political party as a party which is registered in the Register of Political Parties to contest a Dáil election and whose candidates received not less that 2% of the total first preference votes obtained by all candidates at the most recent Dáil general election (election of June 1997 for funding up to 17 May 2002 and election of May 2002 for funding after 17 May 2002).

Section 17 provides that each qualified party will receive €126,973 plus a proportion of a fund not exceeding €3,809,214. The amount of funding payable to a qualified party is determined by expressing each qualified party's first preference votes as a proportion of the total first preference votes received by all qualified parties. Section 17 also provides that the fund of €3,809,214 will be increased in line with general pay increases in the civil service.

Section 18 provides that funding received must be applied to the general conduct and management of the party's affairs and the lawful pursuit by it of any of its objectives and, without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing, any or all of the following purposes:

(1) general administration of the party;
(2) research, education and training;
(3) policy formulation, and
(4) co-ordination of the activities of branches and members of the party.

The funding received is deemed to include provision in respect of expenditure by qualified parties in relation to the promotion of participation by women and young persons in political activity.

Funding may not be applied to, or to recoup, election or referendum expenses.

Section 19(1) provides that payments are made to qualified parties in arrears on a quarterly basis by the Department of Finance.

Section 19(4) provides that no payment shall be made to a qualified political party after 30 April in any year unless and until that party has furnished to the Standards Commission an Exchequer Expenditure Statement and Public Auditor's Report, referred to in section 20, and a Donation Statement and Statutory Declaration, and the Standards Commission has furnished a copy thereof to the Minister for Finance and certified that the Statement and Report and the Donation Statement and Statutory Declaration were completed in accordance with the relevant provisions of the legislation and the guidelines published by the Standards Commission.

Section 20 provides that the appropriate officer of each qualifying party shall furnish to the Standards Commission an Exchequer Expenditure Statement stating that funding received in respect of the preceding year was applied to some or all of the purposes in section 18, referred to above, and indicating the actual matters to which the funding was applied (including the amounts applied to the promotion of participation by women and young persons in political activity). The Exchequer Expenditure Statement must be audited by a public auditor and a copy of the auditor's report must be furnished to the Standards Commission with the Exchequer Expenditure Statement. A copy of each Exchequer Expenditure Statement and Public Auditor's Report is required to be laid by the Standards Commission before the Houses of the Oireachtas.

Miscellaneous

Section 71 provides that each political party must appoint an appropriate officer for, amongst other things, the purpose of furnishing the party's Donation Statement and Statutory Declaration and the Exchequer Expenditure Statement and Public Auditor's Report to the Standards Commission. Where no appropriate officer stands appointed at any time, the leader of the party is deemed to be the appropriate officer.

Section 73 provides that the Standards Commission must retain at its offices, for a period of three years, every Donation Statement and Statutory Declaration and Exchequer Expenditure Statement and Public Auditor's Report furnished to it and to make these documents available to the public for inspection and copying.

PART 3. Annual Donation Statements of Political Parties

Donation Statements and Statutory Declarations in respect of 2002

The Standards Commission wrote to the appropriate officer of each of the thirteen registered political parties on 3 March 2003 enclosing a Donation Statement and Statutory Declaration form (02/PP/DS) for completion and return by the statutory deadline of 31 March 2003.

Donation Statements have been received from each of the 13 political parties which were included in the Register of Political Parties during 2002 to contest a Dáil or European Parliament election. A summary of the donations disclosed by parties is provided in Tables 1 to 7 below.

Political Donations Accounts/Certificate of Monetary Donations

The requirement to open a separate political donations account was introduced by section 23B of the 1997 Act, as amended, which commenced with effect from 1 January 2002. If a political party received a monetary donation of more than €126.97 during 2002, it was required to open a political donations account. The Donation Statement and Statutory Declaration furnished to the Standards Commission by the appropriate officer of the party was required to be accompanied by a Certificate of Monetary Donations and a separate Statutory Declaration, as well as a statement from the financial institution where the political party had opened the political donations account.

While all of the political parties opened political donations accounts and lodged the political donations to that account, the Socialist Party informed the Standards Commission that a number of donations which it received were lodged to the party's main account in error. A list of those donations was provided and the party certified that all of the donations were used for political purposes.

Anonymous Donations

On 16 April 2002, the Standards Commission was notified by Sinn Féin's Director of Finance, Mr. Desmond Mackin, that an anonymous donation of €200 in cash had been received in Sinn Féin's Head Office for use in the election campaign of Mr. Martin Ferris, TD.

Pursuant to section 23(2) of the 1997 Act, Mr. Mackin remitted the anonymous donation to the Standards Commission in the form of a cheque for €200.

In accordance with section 23(3) of the 1997 Act, the Standards Commission laid a notification of the anonymous donation before each House of the Oireachtas on 3 May 2002. As also required by section 23(3), the Standards Commission notified the Minister for Finance of the remittance. The Department of Finance informed the Standards Commission that the cheque should be forwarded to that Department for lodgement to the Exchequer. This was done on 16 May 2002.

The Standards Commission was not notified of receipt of any other anonymous donations in relation to 2002.

PART 4. Exchequer Funding of Political Parties

Expenditure Statements for 2002

On 3 March, 2003 the Standards Commission wrote to the appropriate officer of each of the 6 qualified political parties enclosing an Exchequer Expenditure Statement form (02/PP/EFS) for completion and return to the Standards Commission not later than 31 March 2003. This is not a statutory deadline. It was selected by the Standards Commission because it coincides with the date by which political parties must furnish Donation Statements to the Standards Commission. It was also chosen by the Standards Commission to ensure that political parties had adequate time to furnish the Statements before 30 April 2003, having regard to the fact that future payments could otherwise be delayed by virtue of section 19(4) of the 1997 Act, which provides that no payment can be made to a party after 30 April in any year unless, by that date, the Exchequer Expenditure Statement and Public Auditor's Report and the Donation Statement and Statutory Declaration for the preceding year have been received by the Standards Commission.

One of the qualified parties, the Progressive Democrats, failed to furnish its Exchequer Expenditure Statement and Public Auditor's Report to the Standards Commission by 30 April 2003. It was received on 19 May 2003.

The Statements of Expenditure provided by the appropriate officers of Fianna Fáil, Fine Gael and the Labour Party did not contain sufficient information under each heading of the actual matters to which the expenditure was applied. Accordingly, they were asked to provide more specific details under certain headings. The relevant information was subsequently provided.

A breakdown of payments received by qualified parties in respect of 2002 is provided at Tables 8 and 9 below.

PART 5. Furnishing of Statutory Documentation to the Minister for Finance

As provided for in the legislation, the Standards Commission has furnished a copy of each Exchequer Expenditure Statement and accompanying Public Auditor's Report and Donation Statement and Statutory Declaration received from qualified political parties to the Minister for Finance.

The Standards Commission has also certified to the Minister for Finance that each Exchequer Expenditure Statement and accompanying Public Auditor's Report and Donation Statement and Statutory Declaration was completed in accordance with the Standards Commission's guidelines and that they comply with the relevant provisions of the legislation.

PART 6. Laying of material before the Houses of the Oireachtas

As provided for in the legislation, the Standards Commission has, today, laid the Donation Statements and Statutory Declarations and the Exchequer Expenditure Statements and accompanying Public Auditor's Reports before each House of the Oireachtas.

PART 7. Public Inspection of Statutory Documentation

The Donation Statements and Statutory Declarations and Exchequer Expenditure Statements and Public Auditors' Reports furnished to the Standards Commission may be inspected and copied by members of the public at the Standards Commission's offices at 18 Lower Leeson Street, Dublin 2, on Mondays to Fridays from 10.00 am to 12.30 pm and from 2.30 pm to 4.00 pm. The information contained in the documents is also available, in summary form, on the Standards Commission's website www.sipo.ie

Tables detailing donations disclosed by political parties (2002)

Table 1: Disclosure of donations received by political parties in 2002

Political PartyAppropriate OfficerTotal value of donations
disclosed  €
Christian Democrat Party
(The National Party)
Mr. Daniel DesmondNil
Christian Solidarity PartyMr. Patrick SmythNil
Communist Party of IrelandMr. Eugene McCartanNil
Fianna FáilMr. Hugh Dolan193,539
(of which 10,450 was refunded)
Fine GaelMr. Tom CurranNil
Green PartyMr. Martin C. Nolan12,696
Labour PartyMr. Michael Allen18,313.83
Progressive DemocratsMr. John Higgins23,202.00
Sinn FéinMr. Desmond Mackin12,348.69
Socialist PartyMr. Michael Murphy5,700
Socialist Workers PartyMs. Bríd SmithNil
South Kerry Independent AllianceMr. Michael GleesonNil
The Workers PartyMr. John LowryNil
 Total Donations Disclosed265,799.52
of which €10,450 was refunded

Table 2: List of donations disclosed by Fianna Fáil

Value of Donation
Type of DonationName of DonorDescription of DonorAddress of Donor
6,000ChequeColman BerminghamIndividual22 Fitzwilliam Square,
Dublin 2.
6,348ChequeBrendan McGrathIndividual12 Grove Lawn,
Malahide,
Co. Dublin.
5,243Use of CarNissan IrelandCompanyNaas Road,
Dublin 12.
4,975ChequeMotor Import LimitedCompanyBMW House,
John F. Kennedy Drive,
Naas Road,
Dublin 12.
127Bank TransferMotor Import LimitedCompanyBMW House,
John F. Kennedy Drive,
Naas Road,
Dublin 12.
6,000ChequeBovale Developments LimitedCompanyCulcommon,
Batterstown,
Co. Meath.
6,349ChequeCullenagh PartnershipPartnershipThe Old Quarter Bar,
Cruises Street,
Limerick.
6,348ChequeEdward QuinlanIndividual1, Mount Oval,
Rochestown,
Co. Cork.
5,079ChequeExcellence in Tourism LimitedCompany41 Fitzwilliam Place,
Dublin 2.
256Profit from fundraiserExcellence in Tourism LimitedCompany41 Fitzwilliam Place,
Dublin 2.
6,000ChequeJohn MoranIndividualHoliday Inn Dublin,
99 - 107 Pearse Street,
Dublin 2.
5,000ChequeKeogh McConnellBusiness128 Rathgar Road,
Dublin 6.
150Profit from fundraiserKeogh McConnellBusiness128 Rathgar Road,
Dublin 6.
6,348ChequeLyncourt Developments LimitedCompanyBettyville,
Ballyboughal,
Co. Dublin.
5,079Bank TransferAirscape LimitedCompanyc/o Harcourt Developments Limited,
18 - 19 Harcourt Street,
Dublin 2
2,560 €1,300 refunded to Airscape Limited.Profit from fundraiserAirscape LimitedCompanyc/o Harcourt Developments Limited,
18 - 19 Harcourt Street,
Dublin 2
7,618Bank TransferCastlemarket HoldingsCompanyTreasury Building,
Lower Grand Canal Street, Dublin 2.
2,030 €3,350 refunded to Castlemarket HoldingsProfit from fundraiserCastlemarket HoldingsCompanyTreasury Building,
Lower Grand Canal Street, Dublin 2.
5,078ChequeMurnane & O'Shea LimitedCompanyGlengarriff Road,
Bantry,
Co. Cork.
750Profit from fundraiserMurnane & O'Shea LimitedCompanyGlengarriff Road,
Bantry,
Co. Cork.
5,000ChequeMusgrave LimitedCompanyBallycurreen,
Airport Road,
Co. Cork.
150Profit from fundraiserMusgrave LimitedCompanyBallycurreen,
Airport Road,
Co. Cork.
6,349ChequeTreasury Holdings LimitedCompany35 Barrow Street,
Dublin 2.
6,250ChequeNoel O'CallaghanIndividualc/o O'Callaghan Hotels,
16 - 20 Sth. Cumberland Street,
Dublin 2.
4,500ChequeP. J. McGrath & CompanyCompanyBerkeley House,
17 Berkeley Street,
Dublin 2.
1,280Profit from fundraiserP. J. McGrath & CompanyCompanyBerkeley House,
17 Berkeley Street,
Dublin 2.
6,000ChequeRay StokesIndividual7 Ardilea Downs,
Mount Anville,
Dublin 14.
6,349ChequeSpencer Dock Development CompanyCompanyThe Warehouse,
35 Barrow Street,
Dublin 2.
5,000ChequeSilver Hill FoodsBusinessEmyvale,
Co Monaghan.
150Profit from fundraiserSilver Hill FoodsBusinessEmyvale,
Co Monaghan.
6,000ChequeTony DeanIndividualc/o A1 Waste,
3 Broomhill Business Complex,
Dublin 24.
5,079Bank TransferMercury Engineering LimitedCompanyMercury House,
Sandyford Industrial Estate,
Dublin 18.
5,000 €3,800 refunded to Mercury EngineeringChequeMercury Engineering LimitedCompanyMercury House,
Sandyford Industrial Estate,
Dublin 18.
5,000ChequeWilliam Fry SolicitorsProfessional FirmFitzwilton House,
Wilton Place,
Dublin 2.
900Profit from fundraiserWilliam Fry SolicitorsProfessional FirmFitzwilton House,
Wilton Place,
Dublin 2.
750Profit from fundraiserDunloe Ewart Plc.Company9 Fitzwilliam Square,
Dublin 2.
6,000ChequeDunloe Management
Services Limited
Company9 Fitzwilliam Square,
Dublin 2.
900 €1,500 refunded to Dunloe Management Services LimitedProfit from fundraiserDunloe Management Services LimitedCompany9 Fitzwilliam Square,
Dublin 2.
5,078ChequeIrish Distillers LimitedCompanyBow Street Distillery,
Smithfield,
Dublin 7.
750Profit from fundraiserIrish Distillers LimitedCompanyBow Street Distillery,
Smithfield,
Dublin 7.
6,000ChequeNoel SmythIndividual22 Fitzwilliam Square,
Dublin 2.
5,079Bank TransferPatrick KellyIndividualc/o Choice Hotels,
128 Lower Baggot Street, Dublin 2.
750Profit from fundraiserPatrick KellyIndividualc/o Choice Hotels,
128 Lower Baggot Street, Dublin 2.
6,000ChequeRonan HanniganIndividual13 Airfield Park,
Donnybrook,
Dublin 4.
5,098ChequeMary RonanIndividualDargle Cottage,
Enniskerry,
Co. Wicklow.
3,483Use of carGlencullen Distributors Ltd.CompanyGlencullen House,
Kylemore Road,
Dublin 10.
3,306 €500 refunded to Glencullen Distributors Ltd.Profit from fundraiserGlencullen Distributors Ltd.CompanyGlencullen House,
Kylemore Road,
Dublin 10.

Table 3: List of donations disclosed by the Progressive Democrats

Value of Donation
Type of DonationName of DonorDescription of DonorAddress of Donor
5,451ChequesRyanair PLCCompanyDublin Airport,
Dublin.
5,588ChequesCantrell & CochraneCompanyKylemore Park,
Dublin 10.
6,348ChequeDave ArnoldIndividual13 Sandyford Office Park,
Dublin 18.
5,815ChequesCastlemarket Holdings Ltd.CompanyTreasury Buildings,
Lower Grand Canal Street,
Dublin 2.

Table 4: List of donations disclosed by Sinn Féin

Value of Donation
Type of DonationName of DonorDescription of DonorAddress of Donor
6,000ChequeMartin Ferris, T.D.Individual18 Casement View,
Ardfert,
Co. Kerry.
6,348.69Cheque and Standing OrderAengus Ó Snodaigh, T.D.Individual12 Decies Road,
Ballyfermot,
Dublin 10.

Table 5: List of donations disclosed by the Labour Party

Value of Donation
Type of DonationName of DonorDescription of DonorAddress of Donor
5,713.83Direct DebitPrionsias De Rossa, TD, MEPIndividual MEP43 Molesworth Street,
Dublin 2.
6,300ChequeJohn O'ConnorIndividual14 Merton Road,
Rathmines,
Dublin 6.
6,300ChequeMSF - AmicusTrade Union15 Merrion Square,
Dublin 2.

Table 6: List of donations disclosed by the Green Party

Value of Donation
Type of
Donation
Name of DonorDescription of DonorAddress of Donor
6,348ChequeNuala Ahern, MEPIndividual5 Oaklands, Greystones,
Co. Wicklow.
6,348Standing OrderPatricia McKenna, MEPIndividualEU Parliament Office,
41 - 43 Molesworth Street, Dublin 2.

Table 7: List of donations disclosed by the Socialist Party

Value of Donation
Type of DonationName of DonorDescription of DonorAddress of Donor
5,700ChequesJoe Higgins, T.D.Individual155 Briarwood Close,
Dublin 15.

Table 8: Exchequer funding of qualified political parties under the Electoral Acts in 2002

Qualified Political PartiesTotal funding
received
Amount of funding brought forward from 2001
Overall total funding available for spending in 2002
Total expenditure in 2002 of funding received
Balance of funding carried forward to 2003
Fianna Fáil1,898,164Nil1,898,1641,898,12539
Fine Gael1,193,566Nil1,193,566906,305287,261
Labour Party627,385Nil627,385494,059133,326
Progressive Democrats307,594Nil307,594307,594Nil
Green Party272,83421,546294,380182,375112,005
Sinn Féin347,664Nil347,664347,664Nil
Total4,647,20721,5464,668,7534,136,122532,631

Table 9: Spending by political parties of Exchequer funding under the Electoral Acts in 2002

(The letters in row 1 represent the headings below under which expenditure is permitted by section 18 of the Electoral Acts)

(a) general administration of the party
(b) research, education and training
(c) policy formulation
(d) co-ordination of the activities of branches and members of the party
(e) promotion of participation of women
(f) promotion of participation of young people

Qualified Political
Party
a
b
c
d
e
f
Amount of total funding spent
Fianna Fáil1,124,6723,69560,000709,758Nil(33,803) 11,898,125
Fine Gael556,2752,997Nil317,634Nil29,399906,305
Labour Party323,46438,78641,80238,62032,34019,047494,059
Progressive Democrats190,00330,4759,65677,460NilNil307,594
Green Party142,2883,6047,03224,9071,4433,101182,375
Sinn Féin193,41630,67631,30074,75311,4456,074347,664
Total 32,530,118110,233149,7901,243,13245,22857,621 2
(91,424)
4,136,122

1 Figure included under "Co-ordination of the Activities of the Branches & Members"

2 Does not include the amount referred to at note 1. Total deemed to have been incurred under this heading is €91,424.

3 Figures have been rounded to the nearest €.