The eleventh report of the Committee on Standards in Public Life, published January 2007
This review of The Electoral Commission, a body established following the recommendations of the Committee’s Fifth Report, examines the relevance of the Commission’s current mandate, governance arrangements and accountability framework. It’s aim is to ensure that The Electoral Commission will continue to meet the regulatory frameworks for elections and political parties.
The Report made a total of 46 recommendations, including:
Ensuring integrity and public confidence by streamlining and refocusing the Commission in two core roles: as regulator of political party funding and as a regulator of electoral administration Creating statutory regional electoral officers (REOs) to monitor and report on performance and drive up standards of voter registration and fraud prevention and detection. Moving from the “head of household” system of voter registration to individual voter registration with an additional, objective personal identifier – to be implemented immediately after the next general election or by 2010 at the latest. Confirming the Commission’s role as a proactive regulator of political party funding rules A new ‘compliance unit’ in the Commission to take prompt, pro-active and competent investigative action on party funding and campaign expenditure. A new system of administrative financial penalties that can be issued by the Commission for breaches of party funding rules A package of supporting measures to improve governance and accountability of the Commission. The Committee also recommended that the Commission be stripped of responsibility for any electoral boundary setting work; for electoral policy and encouraging participation in the democratic process.