Ok, so I may be slow, but I have now worked out my bleating about this government’s approach to the voluntary sector a few weeks ago was quite timely. You see, dear old Mr Brown has just screwed the third sector – again. Tax is down to 20% from next year, whoppee! Oh, except there will be no 10% rate any more, so its only down as long as you are not on a low income. I have heard the income tax changes described as “roughly neutral” by some and a “small increase” by others, either way, it is redistributive taxation rather than a real tax cut. Just the sort of thing you expect from a labour government. Oh, aside from the bit where it favours the better off, and dumps on the working class, but never mind, there’s the good ol’ incomprehensible tax credits system, so we’ll all be OK….
Anyway, I digress. So Gordon has claimed a tax cut while saving a few pennies (very prudent) but hold on a mo, he has actually made a bit more, by reducing charities income. You see the base rate of income tax will drop, and so will the amount charities can reclaim under the Gift Aid scheme. Fair enough you might think, you should only be able to reclaim what has been paid in. Except we are paying the same amount of income tax, or slightly more, yet Gordon is keeping more for the government to fritter away, and leaving less for the voluntary and community sector they are so keen to support (at least when it means cheaper contracts for them than the private sector can offer.)
Time for a more left wing administration, like, erm… just about anyone else….