Donors gave $421,011 to support Helen Haines’ successful Independent run for Indi during the 2019 federal election campaign.

Cash donations amounting to $284,891 were made by 997 supporters – separate from in-kind gifts of $136,120.

The average cash contribution was equivalent to $286 per donor.

The largest cash donation was $35,000 given by Climate 200 Pty Limited – a non-partisan, not-for-profit initiative led by environmental philanthropist, businessman and renewable energy advocate Simon Holmes à Court.

The company was established in April, this year, to help the campaigns of election candidates supporting a science-based response to the climate emergency, and transparency in politics.

Its donation was made in two tranches – $10,000 late in April and $25,000 early in May – and followed Dr Haines’ commitment on January 12, this year, to make climate her top priority if she succeeded Cathy McGowan as the Independent candidate for Indi.

It was the only cash contribution to the Independent campaign to exceed the Australian Electoral Commission’s $13,800 threshold requiring formal disclosure.

Dr Haines and her husband, Phil Haines, also made cash donations to the campaign of $5000 each.

Additionally – as Dr Haines’ campaign director – Mr Haines was one of five people who made in-kind gifts of job skills to the campaign valued at a total of $136,120.

The other in-kind donors were:

  • Amanda Aldous, for graphic design, campaign materials and community development
  • Nick Haines (Dr and Mr Haines’ son), for strategic campaigning
  • Sara Hardie, for campaign office administration, and
  • Jamie Kronborg, for media and communications services

The campaign’s total revenue of donations and in-kind gifts was disclosed in returns lodged with the Australian Electoral Commission by September 2.

So was campaign expenditure of $321,114.

Dr Haines has confirmed that no-one among the 1700 volunteers who staffed and supported the campaign was paid.

The campaign also received $79,942 as a public funding entitlement from the AEC after the election – the equivalent of $2.76 for every formal first preference vote.

Federal election candidate, political party and donor election disclosure returns are published on November 4 on the AEC website.

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