Q1 Why is a registered company auditor required?
Section 88(1) of the Act requires a party (whether registered or not), an elected member, a group or a candidate to disclose details of political donations received and electoral expenditure incurred by them or on their behalf, in regard to State elections, by-elections and local government elections. Section 96K(1) of the Act requires that these disclosures are to be accompanied by a certificate of a company auditor. In addition, section 74 of the Act requires auditing of claims for public funding in State Elections.
Q2 Who can audit disclosures and claims for payment?
Only a registered company auditor (ie an auditor within the meaning of the Corporations Act 2001 of the Commonwealth) can audit:
Registered officers and deputy registered officers of registered political parties, elected members, candidates, official agents and party agents are not permitted to audit disclosures or claims for payment.
Q3 What are the responsibilities of an auditor?
As an auditor you are required to review financial information included in the disclosure of political donations and electoral expenditure. The review must accord with the requirements of ASRE 2405, “Review of Historical Financial Information Other than a Financial Report” (pdf). This standard must be read before commencing this assignment.
In addition, the Authority has issued a Reference Guide for Auditors that outlines auditing requirements and auditor responsibilities. The Guide must be read in conjunction with the Election Funding and Disclosures Act 1981 (the Act) and the 2009 Regulation (the Regulation) as well as the relevant Funding and Disclosure Guide issued by the EFA.