The Taming of the Charitable Shrew: State Roll Back of Charity Tax Concessions
(2016) 27(1) Public Law Review 54
23 Pages Posted: 30 Jun 2017
Date Written: 2016
Charitable status is used as a key vehicle for the delivery of State tax concessions for matters such as transferring property, paying wages to employees and owning land. From a regulatory perspective, the concessions are intended to reward or influence a range of behaviours that might broadly be described as being for the benefit of the public. However, the untamed common law concept of “charity” that applies for State taxes has continued to expand, so reducing the behaviour-focusing effect of the concessions. Until recently, the States had done little to address the issue, but that has now changed with a flurry of amendments and proposals across various jurisdictions. This article examines and critiques the reforms and proposals by, first, investigating how the broadening of charitable ends and means acted as an impetus, and secondly, by evaluating the efficiency with which the reforms seek to influence behaviour by restricting ends and means.
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