What is the rule for the "regulated period" for party political spending in UK general elections?
This document states:
UK Parliamentary general elections usually have a regulated period of 365 days ending on the day of the election.
Given that the date of a general election cannot be known in advance, this appears to be quite limiting.
This document outlines the General Election of 2017, indicating that because it was a snap election the long period dod not apply, and only the short period was regulated. This appears to contradict other sources.
There appear to be three types of spending, each with their own rules:
- Party (usually 365 days ending on election day)
At national level, a registered political party can spend £30,000 for each constituency that it contests at a general election. So a party fighting 650 seats could spend up to £19.5 million across the UK.
Non-Party (usually 365 days ending on election day)
During the long campaign from 19 December 2014 to dissolution on 30 March 2015 the candidate’s expenditure limit is £30,700 plus either
9p per elector in county constituencies (predominantly rural) 6p per elector for borough constituencies (predominantly urban) And for the short campaign the limit is £8,700 plus either
9p per elector in county constituencies 6p per elector for borough constituencies
In a general election, the maximum a candidate can spend in the 25 days before polling day is much lower: roughly between £10,000 and £16,000, depending on the number of voters and whether it is a borough or county constituency.