CORPORATE TAX AVOIDANCE
MORE OF THE SAME
Fairfax Media reported that when Joe Hockey was Treasurer he was offering privileged access to a select group of business people and industry lobbyists in return for tens of thousands of dollars in donations to the Liberal Party via a secretive fund-raising body.
Below are a series of questions Fairfax Media asked Joe Hockey and the NSW Liberal Party about the North Sydney Forum – and their responses.
QUESTIONS FOR JOE HOCKEY
1. Who are the current members of the North Sydney Forum?
2. What role did you have in setting it up?
3. Why was it set up?
4. What is the extent of your involvement in the administration of the forum?
5. How many VIP briefings/meetings did you grant forum members in the last 12 months? Where were they held, who attended and what was discussed?
6. How many of these have occurred since you became Treasurer?
7. How many other meetings did you grant forum members in the last 12 months? Where were they held, who attended and what was discussed?
8. How many of these have occurred since you became Treasurer?
9. What discussions have you had with forum member the Financial Services Council regarding the Future of a Financial Advice legislation? Who else was present?
10. What discussions have you had with forum chairman John Hart regarding the review of the Fair Work Act? Who else was present?
11. How many forum-related meetings have you attended with Nick Di Girolamo?
12. How many forum-related meetings have you attended with Eddie Obeid jnr?
13. How many forum-related meetings have you attended with Arthur Sinodinos?
“Questions about the function and administration of the North Sydney Forum should be addressed to them. The Treasurer’s diary is confidential.”
QUESTIONS FOR THE NSW LIBERAL PARTY
1. Who are the current corporate and individual members of the North Sydney Forum? Can you please provide a breakdown of companies and individuals by membership class etc.
2. What is the total value of membership fees and donations to the North Sydney Forum since it was established?
3. What information about membership fees to the North Sydney Forum is disclosed to the NSW Election Funding Authority or Australian ElectoralCommission by the Liberal party?
4. Does the Liberal party provide the EFA or AEC with the names of the members of the forum? If not, why not?
5. Why does the Liberal party not lodge a separate disclosure return for the North Sydney Forum?
6. How does the party determine where (ie to which seats) funds raised through memberships and donations to the North Sydney Forum are distributed?
7. Will you please confirm that the membership and other funds are distributed to seats outside North Sydney and, if possible, provide a list the seats to which funds have been directed.
“North Sydney Forum is a fundraising body of North Sydney FEC, as such it reports to the FEC who in turn report to the NSW Liberal Party. It is covered by the Australian Electoral Act with donations disclosed to the AEC in accordance with the law by the NSW Division of the Party and funds are used for the work of the Party.”