The Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) yesterday denied that Chairman Su Tseng-chang (蘇貞昌) had misused or wasted party funds by using the funding process to benefit his re-election campaign.
The Chinese-language China Times yesterday reported that the party had raised the allocation rate of DPP employees’ retirement reserve funds from 6 percent to 8 percent, adding NT$1.65 million (US$54,430) to the party’s annual expenses, even though it has been in the red since Su’s two-year term began in May 2012.
Su, who is expected to seek re-election as chairman in the party’s May election, was trying to win support from party members with various measures, the report said, adding that he had raised bonuses for headquarters staff and unilaterally decided that the DPP’s 13 at-large legislators no longer have to submit a required monthly donation of NT$90,000.
The party said in a press release that the allocation rate was raised to help retired staffers because employee salaries have not been raised for eight years.
The press release quoted DPP Secretary-General Lin Hsi-yao (林錫耀) as saying that the party wanted to “reassure the staffers of their financial security by paying 2 percent more than the legally required allocation fee.”
Every at-large lawmaker is required to pay the party’s headquarters NT$135,000 per month, but could receive expenditure reimbursement for every local office that they establish, the party said.
The subsidy mechanism was established to encourage at-large lawmakers to work closely with local communities and strengthen grassroots connections, it said.
The party also denied that it is operating in the red, saying it had a surplus of NT$45 million last year and NT$77 million in 2012.
Former premier Frank Hsieh (謝長廷) has already announced his intention run in the chairmanship election.
Su and former DPP chairperson Tsai Ing-wen (蔡英文) are also expected to run.