Mayoral donor unmasked

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No further action will be taken against a Queenstown mayoral candidate after he resubmitted his electoral expenses return.

Last month the Otago Daily Times reported Roger Tompkins had filed a ‘nil return’ in respect of donations over $1500.

Under the Local Electoral Act 2001 all candidates must disclose donations over $1500, anonymous or otherwise, and detail all electoral expenses incurred.

Tompkins’ return, dated December 8, did not list any donations, despite the film director telling Mountain Scene in an interview published on December 1 he received one donation over the threshold which he had to declare.

Last month Mr Tompkins, who spent $19,164.46 on his campaign, told the ODT he did not declare the previously reported donation because he had refunded $1000 to the donor after taking umbrage at Scene articles.

Queenstown council’s electoral officer Jane Robertson told the ODT┬áthat Tompkins resubmitted his return on December 22, disclosing a $2000 donation from “J Martin”, of Lake Hayes, received on August 8.

No further action has been taken, Robertson says.

Meanwhile a ‘nil return’ filed by one-term councillor Merv Aoake, who unsuccessfully sought re-election last year, stood.

Aoake told the ODT he had spent money on his campaign, could not hazard a guess at how much that was but “didn’t claim a dollar” on his expenses form.

Robertson says having spoken to Aoake about the matter she agreed he didn’t need to file an amended return.

“I am satisfied that he did not incur expenses in his election campaign that should be declared on his return of expenses.

“Accordingly, his ‘nil’ return stands.”

Otago Daily Times