Polegate’s MP has taken proposals surrounding Treasury assistance for charities to the Chancellor Philip Hammond.
The move follows a recent meeting between Maria Caulfield and members of The Sussex Archaeological Society, which is the largest and one of the two oldest archaeological societies in the UK.
The proposal put forward by The Sussex Archaeological Society highlights the difficulties that charities across the country, themselves included, face following the introduction of the National Living Wage.
Figures suggest that on average a charity pays its staff 15% less than the market rate compared to a corporate body. Staff are thought to accept this as they often work for charities for altruistic reasons. If this 15% was treated as a donation to the charity and as a result gift aid contributions could be claimed by the employee on the National Living Wage then income tax could be claimed back by the charities to help cover the costs. No new administrative procedures would be needed.
Speaking from the constituency, the Lewes MP said, “I was delighted to be able to recently meet with members of The Sussex Archaeological Society to hear about the fantastic work that they carry out throughout my constituency of Lewes, as well as across Sussex.”
“I was however concerned to hear that currently, unlike businesses, who receive a reduction in corporation tax, charities receive no mitigation for paying their employers the National Living Wage, which is having a very real impact upon the charity sector.
“I am therefore very pleased to have been able to take the proposal set-out by The Sussex Archaeological Society to the Chancellor, which requests that the Treasury provides relief to them through gift aid.”
Adding, Tristan Bareham, CEO of The Sussex Archaeological Society said, “The Society, as a major charitable heritage employer in Southern England, welcomes the implementation of the government’s living wage for its employees. However, the corporation tax mitigation measures, designed to partially offset these significant new costs, do not benefit charities.
“The Society has therefore proposed a charitable relief measure under the Gift Aid scheme which would uniquely benefit charities with significant employment costs, and we as an organisation are very pleased that Maria Caulfield has taken this forward to the Chancellor.”