What the Budget means for sport and recreation
Today (21st March 2012) the Chancellor made his annual Budget Statement, and while the bulk of media coverage focuses on the debate about the changes to personal tax, we’ve looked behind the headlines to pick out the most relevant points for sport and recreation – and how our work representing you has won its share of successes in these difficult times.
The Government has confirmed its intention to make limited amendments to the legislative basis for the Community Amateur Sports Club scheme to ensure that it operates as originally intended. These measures will be detailed in full as part of the Finance Bill which will be introduced to Parliament in the next two weeks, but are not expected to introduce key changes that the Alliance has longed campaigned for, such as the extension of Gift Aid on junior subscriptions. We will continue our work to promote the value of CASCs and will continue our dialogue with HM Revenue and Customs on this area.
We’re pleased that our campaigning (with other partners) around gambling taxation has also reaped rewards. To reduce the effect of betting operators locating offshore the Government will move to a tax regime that ensures operators pay gambling duties according to where their customers are based. This brings the UK into line with other European states and will help ensure that all operators are subject to regulation by the Gambling Commission, which is good news for the sport sector.
Something else we’ve been pushing for was reform of the way elite athletes are taxed when they visit these shores to compete. So there was positive news relating to the staging of major sports events, with the announcement that HM Revenue and Customs will revise its approach to calculating the amount of endorsement income taxation to be paid by non-resident sports people. This will help ensure that major tournaments in the UK continue to attract the biggest names. Similarly, the Chancellor confirmed that tax exemptions would be in place for non-resident participants in the 2013 Champions League Final and the 2014 Commonwealth Games, as the rights-holders require.
The Chancellor announced that reforms to planning guidance would be published on Tuesday 27 March. By introducing the new National Planning Policy Framework the Government intends to simplify the planning system and prioritise sustainable development. Throughout the consultation period the Alliance lobbied hard for the guidance to be strengthened, and we’ll continue to make strong representations on behalf of the sport and recreation sector on this issue if need be.
Other notable announcements for the sport and recreation sector are as follows:
- The Chancellor announced that he would close loopholes in the tax system, including extending VAT to a number of products including sports drinks.
- The maximum donation eligible under the Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme will be £20 rather than £10, and the total amount permissible (£5000) remains unchanged.
- The Chancellor confirmed guidance from earlier in the year from the Office for Tax Simplification which sees the abolition of various reliefs including capital allowances for safety improvements at sports grounds.
- Alcohol and fuel duty remain as they are for 2012-13.
The full document can be read here, but if you would like any more information on any of the aspects described here please contact: