Share

Giving Summit critical date for tax relief cap, says Philanthropy Review chair

Giving Summit critical date for tax relief cap, says Philanthropy Review chair
News

Giving Summit critical date for tax relief cap, says Philanthropy Review chair 1

Fundraising | Celina Ribeiro | 4 May 2012

Thomas Hughes-Hallett has warned that if there is no announcement on the proposed tax relief cap by next week’s Giving Summit, the sector will face an uphill battle to get it amended.

The Marie Curie Cancer Care chief executive said that he, along with two others, have been in daily contact with the Treasury, lobbying for changes to the proposed cap on the amount of tax relief that higher-rate taxpayers can claim on donations to charity. They had expected an announcement on the subject this week but, said Hughes-Hallett, “the silence is deafening”.

The agenda for next Tuesday's Summit does devote a whole hour to discussing the tax relief cap, with the session hosted by David Gauke MP, Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury.

But if no change to the cap is announced at the Summit, charities and donors will need to effect a step-change in the way they lobby for reform, said Hughes-Hallett. In the event of a no-announcement Giving Summit, he said: “We really need to make a fuss.” 

In the future, charities will have to provide concrete examples as to what impact the cap will have on their ability to help beneficiaries. So far, he said, “the shouting is not helping the sector”.

But, Hughes-Hallett, also the chair of the Philanthropy Review, expressed concern that any new deal on the tax relief cap could threaten the share tax incentive.  

The CEO-philanthropist has previously not spoken out publicly about his views on the controversial tax relief, but aired his thoughts yesterday at the Philanthropy Programme symposium, organised by EAPG and STEP, in London.

'Along comes Bilbo Baggins'

Hughes-Hallett said that in the period leading up to the tax relief cap announcement in the March Budget, the environment for philanthropy was “rapidly improving”, with more philanthropists encouraged to give more. This, he said, has now “totally changed”.

“Along comes Bilbo Baggins and calls us all tax dodgers,” he said. Claiming the wealthy give to avoid tax, he said, is no way to encourage them to give more.

Attempting to unpick the motivation for the tax relief cap on donations, Berwin Leighton Paisner partner Rupert Ticehurst said: “I never understood how charities can be used for tax evasion.”

Hughes-Hallett said the impact on charitable donations, “was a mistake… it’s not something they intended”.

However, he added: “Treasury don’t like the wealthy getting to act as their own Chancellor of the Exchequer.”

Hilary Barnard
Principal Consultant
HBMC
4 May 2012

Both parties in the Coalition Government have done rather poorly in yesterday's elections. These elections have represented the biggest test of public opinion since the 2010 General Election. While there have been many other factors that have contributed to these results, there is no doubt that the 'charity tax' has added to the unpopularity and consequent loss of votes.
I have no objection to quiet diplomacy but Hughes-Hallett's account suggests that it is not working on this occasion. Politicians may be more persuaded by the judgement of the electorate. Continuing with an unpopular policy in such circumstances, particularly one dreamt up in the Treasury in isolation from the Departments most engaged with the third sector, needs considerable justification when it brings unpopularity and costs votes. It is not party political to point this out.

Comments

[Cancel] | Reply to:

Close »

Community Standards

The civilsociety.co.uk community and comments board is intended as a platform for informed and civilised debate.

We hope to encourage a broad range of views, however, there are standards that we expect commentators to uphold. We reserve the right to delete or amend any comments that do not adhere to these standards.

We welcome:

  • Robust but respectful debate
  • Strongly held opinions
  • Intelligent relevant discussion
  • The sharing of relevant experiences
  • New participants

We will not publish:

  • Rude, threatening, offensive, obscene or abusive language, or links to such material
  • Links to commercial organisations or spam postings. The comments board is not an advertising platform
  • The posting of contact details for yourself or others
  • Comments intended for malicious purpose or mindless abuse
  • Comments purporting to be from another person or organisation under false pretences
  • Gratuitous criticism, commentary or self-promotion
  • Any material which breaches copyright or privacy laws, or could be considered libellous
  • The use of the comments board for the pursuit or extension of personal disputes

Be aware:

  • Views expressed on the comments board are left at users’ discretion and are in no way views held or supported by Civil Society Media
  • Comments left by others may not be accurate, do not rely on them as fact
  • You may be misunderstood - sarcasm and humour can easily be taken out of context, try to be clear

Please:

  • Enjoy the opportunity to express your opinion and respect the right of others to express theirs
  • Confine your remarks to issues rather than personalities

Together we can keep our community a polite, respectful and intelligent platform for discussion.

Free eNews

Big Society Capital invests £10m to support charity bond growth

25 Jul 2014

Big Society Capital has announced a £10m Charity Bond Support Fund to encourage more charities into the...

HSBC to close bank account of Muslim charity working in Gaza

25 Jul 2014

HSBC has informed the Ummah Welfare Trust that it will close its bank accounts because the charity “now...

Nandy demands PM inquiry into Big Society Network grants

24 Jul 2014

Lisa Nandy, the shadow minister for civil society, has written to David Cameron demanding an inquiry into...

Commission clarifies statements on staff attendance at board meetings

25 Jul 2014

The Charity Commission has rewritten its operational compliance report on the case of Southwark Muslim...

Nandy demands PM inquiry into Big Society Network grants

24 Jul 2014

Lisa Nandy, the shadow minister for civil society, has written to David Cameron demanding an inquiry into...

Workfare charities set to be named after Tribunal rules against DWP

23 Jul 2014

Charities that are involved in the workfare programme run by the Department for Work and Pensions look...

Greenpeace video removed from YouTube following copyright claim

14 Jul 2014

A campaign video by Greenpeace against Lego’s relationship with Shell has been subject to a copyright...

Oxfam advert removed after appearing before extremist videos

10 Jul 2014

Oxfam has removed one of its adverts from YouTube after it was shown on channels showing content from...

Data protection proposals 'potentially catastrophic' for fundraising

8 Jul 2014

EU data protection proposals could have a “potentially catastrophic” impact on charity fundraising,...

Join the discussion

Twitter button

@CSFundraising