HC Deb 28 October 2003 vol 412 c138W
Norman Baker

To ask the Leader of the House how much he estimates will be paid to the Conservative Party out of public funds in the year 2003–04. [135097]

Mr. Hain

Short Money is allocated under three headings: general funding, travel expenses and the costs of the office of the Leader of the Opposition. The amounts available in the first two categories are determined by a formula based on the number of votes cast and the number of seats won in the last general election. The amounts available in 2003–04 for general funding and the office of the Leader of the Opposition are £2,935,041 and £548,102 respectively. Full travel expenses have yet to be claimed.

Cranborne Money is the House of Lords equivalent of Short Money. It must be used by the Official Opposition exclusively in relation to their parliamentary business. The amount available to the Official Opposition in the House of Lords for the 2003–04 financial year is £402,662.

In addition, section 12 of the Political Parties, Elections and Referendums Act 2000 established a policy development grant, which is a grant to a represented registered political party which meets the qualifying conditions to assist the party with the development of policies for inclusion in any manifesto. The total fund for 2003–04 is £2 million, the amount stipulated in the legislation, of which the Conservative Party will be paid £438,6031. The fund is administered by the Electoral Commission.


Electoral Commission.