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Clause 7 - National Lottery Distribution Fund: apportionment

Part of National Lottery Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 12:00 pm on 25th October 2005.

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Photo of Richard Caborn Richard Caborn Minister of State (Sport), Department for Culture, Media & Sport 12:00 pm, 25th October 2005

A number of organisations are not charitable, such as social enterprises, mutuals and residents' associations. They were all turned down because they did not have the right constitution to be charitable. I am sure that the hon. Gentleman will agree that several organisations in his constituency fall within the definition, but that, if they had had access to the funds, they would have added real value to his constituents. We want to broaden the definition of ''charitable'' to the areas that I have just described for non-profit organisations and residents' associations. It is the purpose of the organisation and not its organisational aspect that we believe it is right to consider. The hon. Gentleman may want to give chapter and verse, but I wanted to explain the overall principle of making funding available to organisations that were debarred from receiving moneys but were well within the broad meaning of good causes.

Clause 19 defines ''charitable expenditure'' in respect of the Big Lottery Fund good causes as

''expenditure for a charitable, benevolent or philanthropic purpose.''

The new definition used to decide whether expenditure is charitable is based on its purpose. The existing definition of ''charitable expenditure'' in relation to the Community Fund was based on the institution. The new definition will ensure that in future the focus is on projects rather than the institution, as I have just explained to the hon. Member for Windsor.

In the past, the Community Fund has been unable to fund some deserving projects simply because the organisation applying for funding had the wrong sort of constitution. A swathe of good causes were missed out that could have been aided by such lottery funding.