Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Greens propose cheap fix to Govt’s expensive charity blunder

29 May 2014

Greens propose cheap fix to Govt’s expensive charity blunder

The Green Party has a Member’s Bill that would have solved the fiasco concerning a Queenstown social housing provider's $6 million tax bill.

The Queenstown Lakes Community Trust was facing the bill from IRD after it was deemed by the Charities Commission that the 'rent to own' housing scheme it offered was not a tax free charitable activity.

“The Queenstown Lakes Community Trust lost their charitable status because of the narrow definition of ‘charitable purpose’ in the Charities Act,” Green Party community and voluntary sector spokesperson Denise Roche said today.

“It is absurd for the Government to rely on a definition from the 18th Century.

“The current definition stems from Elizabethan English law and charitable activity has moved on a lot since then.

“The Government’s decision to pay the taxes incurred by the social housing organisation is an expensive short term fix and takes a piecemeal approach.

“The National Council of Women faced a similar problem with back taxes when they took their case to the high court for a decision on whether they are a charity or not.

“Their charitable status was eventually reinstated.

“It is unfair for the community and voluntary sector to have to take individual cases to court to define whether they are a charity or not.

“The Green Party has the solution to this problem,” said Ms Roche.

“We have proposed legislation that that would extend the definition of ‘charitable purpose’ so that community organisations that also act as advocates can carry on doing good work.”

The Green Party’s Charities Amendment Bill makes it clear that organisations that advocate for the relief of poverty, the advancement of education or religion, or any other matter beneficial to the community that constitutes a primary part of their work may be registered as charitable organisations.

Link to the Charities (Charities as Advocates) Amendment Bill: www.greens.org.nz/bills/charities-charities-advocates-amendment-bill


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines



Key In NY: Prime Minister Addresses United Nations

Prime Minister John Key has addressed the United Nations General Assembly in New York, focusing on a call for action in Syria and on other conflicts, reform of the veto process and on the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals. More>>.


Gordon Campbell: On The Lack Of Accountability Over Philip Smith

In New Zealand, accountability is an exotic creature rarely glimpsed at ministerial level, or among senior management. The flight to Rio by the paedophile /murderer Philip John Smith/Traynor is no exception. More>>


More On Corrections

Gordon Campbell: On Putin’s Diplomatic Coup Over Syria

There’s a simple historical precedent for what is occurring in Syria. During WWII, the Allies joined forces with a known butcher and tyrant – Joseph Stalin of the Soviet Union – in order to defeat a greater evil, Nazi Germany… More>>


Key 'Didn't Know': Brownlee Seeks Pandas In China

While Defence Minister Gerry Brownlee is in China pushing a taxpayer funded deal to bring two pandas to New Zealand, the country’s military look set to be hit with a pay freeze, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. More>>


Scoop Business: GCSB Willing To Extend Cyber-Attack Programme To Local ISPs

The Government Communications Security Bureau’s ‘Cortex’ cyber-security programme has been successful in helping identify and mitigate a series of cyber attacks since its introduction and an extension to cover local internet service providers is still on the cards... More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Chris Brown Furore

Thank goodness Dame Tariana Turia has been able to inject a bit of common sense into the Chris Brown visa issue – her argument being that forgiveness has a place in this decision, and there is an opportunity here that should be taken... More>>


Get More From Scoop



Search Scoop  
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news