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Small Charities

Volume 401: debated on Wednesday 19 March 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department when a decision will be made on whether to exempt small charities, with an annual income under £10,000 per annum, from current legislation with regard to charitable file status. [102407]

The Strategy Unit's recent review of charity law and regulation ("Private Action, Public Benefit") included a proposal to change the registration rules for small charities.The proposal would mean that no small charity with an annual income under £10,000 would be required or allowed to register with the Charity Commission. But the proposal would not take away any small charity's charitable status or its right to receive tax reliefs due to charities.The Strategy Unit's review was put out for public consultation late last year. My officials are part way through the process of analysing responses to the consultation. Once that process is complete Ministers will consider whether or not to include the proposal on small charities registration in a draft Charities Bill. We are hoping to make an announcement in the summer.

To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what representations he has received on the subject of exempting small charities from charitable status legislation; and how many were (a) for and (b) against. [102408]

The Strategy Unit's recent review of charity law and regulation ("Private Action, Public Benefit") included a proposal to change the registration rules for small charities. The review was put out for open public consultation late last year.There have been more than 1,100 written responses to the consultation. My officials are part way through the process of carefully analysing these responses. It will be possible accurately to judge the overall level of support or opposition to each proposal only when this process has been completed.In accordance with the Cabinet Office's Code of Practice on written consultations the Government will in due course be publishing a summary of the views expressed by respondents on each proposal. We are hoping to make an announcement in the summer.