At a meeting between Bob Glover (Chairman, St Giles Hospice Promotions) and Michael Fabricant this morning (Saturday October 14th), Mr Fabricant has promised to campaign against a new stealth tax imposed by the Government on 12th June this year which could cripple the St Giles Hospice Lottery. The Hospice is based in Whittington near Lichfield.
Up until a short time ago, St Giles Hospice had to pay the Gaming Board for Great Britain £910 a year as a fee or ‘tax’ on their lottery which raises money to fund the Hospice. But now the Lottery income has exceeded £20,000 (it is now around £21,000), the new Lotteries [Gaming Board Fees] Order 2000 has hiked the fees up to a staggering £9,360 per year. This halves the income of the Lottery and is over a 1,000% rise!
"This is a mean minded move by the Government", says Michael Fabricant. "I shall be asking Mike O’Brien, the Home Office Minister who presented this Order in the House of Commons whether some exemption can be found for charities like St Giles Hospice. I will also be writing to the Chancellor of the Exchequer. Being charitable myself, I can only think that the Minister didn’t think through the consequences of the Order which came into force on 12th June. It seems a great shame that St Giles has been clobbered simply because of the success of their Lottery and the generosity of Lichfield and other folk who contribute to it"
Meanwhile, all Charity Shops could be hit by a new European Directive which would make it illegal for them to sell any goods at all unless they can trace the origins of the donated goods they sell. "In practice, this can be very difficult." says Michael Fabricant. "It is crazy that Brussels could make volunteers working in charity shops into outlaws who might have to pay heavy fines". Michael is backing an amendment tabled by Philip Bradbourn MEP (Conservative, West Midlands) in the European Parliament which would seek to exempt charity shops from this latest European directive. "I hope Philip’s amendment will succeed though this is by no means certain. But why is Brussels interfering in this matter in the first place?" Mr Fabricant asks.