PM Announces New Tax Incentives for Donors
Wednesday, 18th December 2002 at 12:12 pm
The occasion of the Prime Minister’s National Awards for Excellence in Community Business Partnerships 2002 saw an added bonus for the Third Sector with the announcement of new tax incentives for donors.
Prime Minister John Howard took the opportunity of announcing a number of additional taxation initiatives to encourage Community Business Partnerships.
The PM explained that in the past, key reforms in this area have included a range of income tax and capital gains tax incentives to those who make donations of property and providing business, families and individuals with greater flexibility to start their own private trust funds for philanthropic purposes.
Prime Minister Howard said that from the 1st of July 2003, taxpayers would be able to spread deductions for cash donations made to deductible gift recipients in instalments elected by the taxpayer over a period of up to five years.
He said this will make it more attractive for individuals and businesses to make donations to deductible gift recipients sooner and it will also make sure that donors receive the full benefit of deductions for their giving and will ensure that cash and non-cash gifts are treated the same.
The second initiative is aimed at the encouragement of tax incentives to promote workplace giving.
Employees will no longer have to wait until they receive their tax returns to benefit from the tax deductions associated with their donations. They will in future be able to receive the benefit of the tax deduction in their weekly or fortnightly salary.
The Prime Minister said the new arrangements would encourage more employers and employees to enter into workplace giving arrangements.
The awards ceremony was held in the Great Hall in Canberra with an impressive invitation list of more than 400 from the welfare sector, from Government, the business community, and philanthropic individuals.
Prime Minister Howard said he believed that over the past few years there had been something of a cultural change within corporate Australia with the idea of partnership and the idea of contributing to other than the economic growth and strength of our country on the increase.
He said Australia needs also to harness the generosity of individuals and to tap the generosity and the spirit of those within the business community who wish to play a full role in our community.
He said as a direct result of the tax initiatives suggested by the Community Business Partnership to allow prescribed private funds about 81 new foundations have been established.
And the winners are:
Seven community business partnerships were honoured for their positive contributions that have helped to generate opportunities, hope and support for thousands of Australians.
Three partnerships were chosen as the leaders in their respective business category.
Winning the Small Business Award was the partnership between Access Dinghy Sailing Systems, Access Dinghy Foundation and Sailability. Together they created the ‘Sailing for Everyone’ program that provides affordable sailing to people with disabilities.
TATE Associates and Melbourne City Mission were awarded the Medium Business Award for the efforts of staff from TATE Associates and Melbourne Citymission working together with a group of at-risk young people to develop resources to assist other young people in overcoming life challenges.
The Winner of the Large Business Category was BHP Billiton and Conservation Volunteers Australia for their ‘Revive our Wetlands’ project that has helped protect and preserve the nation’s most endangered wetlands.
Special Awards were also presented for Impact on a Community by a Business and for a Long Term Partnership. For the first time, a Special Award was also presented to a media organisation for its reporting and encouragement of community business partnerships.
The 2002 Special Award for Media was presented to Geelong Business News, initiator of the ‘Bollie Awards’ that honour local businesses which promote business growth and opportunity within the Geelong district.
Westpac was awarded the Special Award for Impact on a Community by a Business for their innovative fundraising and corporate philanthropy projects, which have seen over $30 million contributed towards health and education initiatives.
Joint winners of the Special Award for Longevity were Otis Elevator Company and Special Olympics Australia and the Advertising Federation of Australia and the Salvation Army Oasis Youth Support Network.
Team Otis has helped hundreds of people with intellectual disabilities reap the benefits of being part of a world wide sporting event and Oasis Youth Support Network has helped over 15,000 people to find secure accommodation and re-build a positive future.
Congratulations to those winners. You can find out more about the PM’s Community Business Partnership at www.partnership.zip.com.au.