Greens: Budget should give tax breaks to charities

Green Party Finance spokesperson Dan Boyle TD has called for charitable and voluntary organisations to be given first priority in any Budget proposals to reduce taxation.

Speaking after the Irish Charities Tax Reform Conference in Dublin today, Mr Boyle said: "I intend to re-submit amendments to the Finance Bill, should this Government get to introduce such a bill, aimed at reducing the tax burden on charities and voluntary organisations.

"Chief among these is in the area of VAT rebates and exemptions.

"VAT, the highest collected of taxes, disproportionately affects the poorer members of society. It is a further cruelty that agencies that exist to deal with disadvantage in Irish society are also unduly exposed to this punitive form of taxation.

"Proposals for reducing the threshold on which individuals can claim relief on donations given to charities should also be considered. However, in this period when Budget proposals are being considered, more novel approaches should also be borne in mind.

"One such proposal is the idea to transfer stamp duty on credit cards to designated charities, a proposal flagged at yesterday's conference.

"As Green Party spokesperson on finance, I believe that this proposal is very worthy of consideration, and if not included in December's budget it would be my intention to move a suitable amendment, if a Finance Bill gets to be introduced."

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