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New Clause 1 - Annual report

Part of Small Charitable Donations Bill – in a Public Bill Committee at 4:00 pm on 30th October 2012.

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Photo of Gareth Thomas Gareth Thomas Shadow Minister (Cabinet Office), Party Chair, Co-operative Party 4:00 pm, 30th October 2012

To be honest, I have absolutely no idea. We are not debating the previous Government’s gift aid reforms; we are here to recognise that this scheme is vastly more complex. Gift aid has been a huge success, in no small part thanks to the many reforms made by my right hon. Friend the former Prime Minister to the terms of the legislation. Indeed, such was my right hon. Friend’s commitment to the charity sector that the House had a series of opportunities to debate whether the gift aid system worked and whether charities had sufficient other sources of funding.

Given that so much funding has been cut from the charity sector, it is particularly important that we are confident that this scheme will work in the interests of all charities, as opposed to just 20% of them, as the NCVO says it will. It is even more important that we have an annual report and the opportunity for a review clause. The hon. Member for Stafford was sympathetic to the idea of an annual report; I am not clear why he has changed his position, or whether it has anything to do with the presence in the room of the hon. Member for Chelsea and Fulham. Perhaps he will say in his intervention.