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

DFID announces UK's first development impact bond

17 Apr 2014

The UK is to launch the first development impact bond - an international version of the social impact...

Sector 'extraordinarily disconnected' from public, CFG chair says

15 Apr 2014

Charities are becoming “extraordinarily disconnected” from donors and supporters who do not understand...

Stephen Frost announced as Charity Awards host

15 Apr 2014

Civil Society Media is delighted to announce that this year's Charity Awards will be presented by actor...

Paula Sussex to be the next Charity Commission chief executive

17 Apr 2014

Paula Sussex, senior vice president, public sector of CGI, has been appointed the new chief executive...

Impact of welfare reforms felt by 95 per cent of Yorkshire charities

17 Apr 2014

A report published today which looks at the impact of welfare reforms in the region of Yorkshire and Humber...

Trussell Trust sees use of its foodbanks 'almost triple' in a year

16 Apr 2014

The number of people using the Trussell Trust’s foodbanks rose from 347,000 to 913,000 in a single year,...

'Technology can offer charities more than just online donations'

10 Apr 2014

Charities are focusing too much on using digital tools for fundraising instead of how technology can be...

Amnesty calls for 'full and frank disclosure' on alleged US surveillance

9 Apr 2014

Amnesty International has warned that alleged mass surveillance by the American intelligence agency NSA...

Virgin Money Giving launches app following year of growth

1 Apr 2014

Virgin Money Giving has launched an app for users after reporting that 30 per cent of traffic to its platform...

Join the discussion

Twitter button

@CSFundraising