Chapter 3 covers current disclosure requirements under Federal, state and territory laws. What a mixed bag but with plenty of reform initiatives on the table in most places, as there needs to be- two states Victoria and South Australia do not have annual or election based disclosure schemes.
Chapter 6 raises the options for change with timeliness one of the key issues [6.65]:
"The effect of the current timeframes is a lag between transactions being entered into and their disclosure which raises a question over their transparency. The public release dates for disclosures relating to the 24 November 2007 federal election are 12 May 2008 for election returns (for candidates, Senate groups and donors) and 2 February 2009 for annual returns (which cover political parties, associated entities, third parties and donors). Clearly the major point of public disclosure, particularly in the absence of comprehensive regulation through bans or caps on financial activities, is to allow the public to form judgements about political parties and candidates and to apply that knowledge in exercising their franchise at the ballot box. However, these considerable time lags do not allow the voting public to be informed of election campaign finances at the end point of those campaigns when casting their vote."