NICVA has already voiced support for the Give it back George campaign, but would encourage others to get behind the campaign and show support.
“Charities in Northern Ireland, and the rest of the UK, are completely astounded by this policy. From the lack of thought or consultation that has gone in to it, to the long lasting negative perception it will leave behind on those philanthropists giving to charities, painting them as tax dodgers and the charities themselves as bogus. We can’t reverse the damage that this proposed policy has already done, but we can urge our own MPs and all MPs in the UK to let government know the policy is wrong and reverse the decision to cap tax relief on charitable donations”, Seamus McAleavey, Chief Executive of NICVA.
In a week where the Government has already made noises about changing some of the elements of the policy, and holding consultations on these changes many charities, including NICVA, strongly believe this is not enough.
“As different proposals start to emerge on potential amendments to the tax cap policy, from raising the cap threshold through to separating it out from other tax caps, all still completely miss the mark. In order to maintain current levels of giving this cap shouldn’t be applied. At the end of the day philanthropists aren’t gaining from these tax reliefs. There is a net contribution on their part by giving to charities, which will undoubtedly reduce if a cap on this relief is put in place. So we need action now not a vague promise that Government will look at ameliorating the loss to charities’ income. Government should be encouraging more philanthropy and nudging more wealthy people to give, that’s the culture they should be trying to create.”
NICVA repeats its position that if some people try to cheat the tax system by some pretence of charitable giving then HMRC should tackle the abuse not tar genuine donors. By Government’s own yardstick, tax relief encourages certain behaviours and taking them away has the opposite incentive.
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