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London Rates Relief Based Talk

Discussion in 'Scientology Property Tax' started by Bluebell, Aug 31, 2010.

  1. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    WRITE TO YOUR MP!!!

    I think I have set out some good arguments above and I am happy with my wording and I think I have done a good job with it so back to the topic of - Writing to MPs.

    Writing to MPs is an essential way for how UK government is run. It is the channel for ordinary people to represent their views to central government. It is "your voice" if you like. Your local MP will pass this on to the people in power in central government. In the case of this SCIENTOLOGY RATES RELIEF thing then if you want central government to change its mind about the way things are done then you HAVE TO WRITE TO YOUR LOCAL MP. If you want this business rates relief removed then it is unlikely to happen unless a good number of people write in to their MPs about it. And if people don't then central government are unlikely to do anything as they have no ground feel for what the public want and what needs to be done.

    I have done a lot of work on this, as you will all know, but at the end of the day I am happy to see this whole thing slip away if there is no public support and I too measure public support by how many people write in to their MPs to express their views. I am happy for you being happy to do nothing and let the cult take money away from genuine charities and abuse people. If you are happy with this situation then there is no need to write in to your MP. If you are unhappy with the situation then write in. Either way, I support you. I am happy that I have given you good enough ammo to use if you decide you need it.

    Edit: I thought I would add my personal opinion that one person writing in to their local MP about this is equal in value to an Anon demonstration with 200 people present.
  2. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    A good hit on my document from Camden Council today where the clams have got rates relief on 68 Tottenham Court Road.
  3. XenuV2 Member

  4. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Yes, good idea. If they are doing a few places in London in one day then include 146 QVS on their visit list. If we could just get that one decision reversed then the cult would be on the way out. All that is needed to defeat them is to stop giving them financial advantages over other rip-off joints. Level the playing field and they have lost.
  5. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    An important document is that entitled "Errors in the Charity Commission's Decision on the Church of Scientology (England and Wales)". It is pages 62 to 77 inclusive of this document.

    http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/45807/response/131692/attach/2/Section A i.pdf#page=62

    Would it be possible to extract just this section (i.e. pages 62 to 77 incl.) because the current file is too large? I want to send just this one document to the Charity Commission for their analysis.
  6. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    ahem.... I still need this.
  7. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    I still need this. It is important. I need to send it to the Charity Commission.
  8. Spangly Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    I'll have a shot at it Roland, will reply back shortly.

    For future reference, one easy way to do this would be to selective-print those pages you want (on the Print dialog, you get to pick which pages - it defaults to All, but you can specify the range you want) to a PDF-printer-driver such as PDFCreator.

    I'll take a crack at this with the fancier tools I have.
  9. Spangly Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    OK Roland, check your PMs.
  10. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Got it.

    A most valuable document, now, hopefully, here:

    MEGAUPLOAD - The leading online storage and file delivery service

    It works, great!

    Skip the legal stuff and just read pages 13, 14 and 15 if you want a laugh. This is what helped them get rates relief in Sunderland. :eek:)

    Edit: Can somebody scan it in and turn it into an accurate PDF copy with searchable text complete with accurate footnotes (there may be some superscript characters)? I will proofread it.
  11. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    I still need this scan even if it can't cope with the superscripts. The ideal is a PDF with all the formatting correct along with superscripts but less will also be good.
  12. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Dear Claire,

    since I live in Germany I was unaware of the Finance Act 2010 until today. I have been reading Schedule 6 of this Act where there is a clear definition of what constitutes a "charity". Since the Church of Scientology Religious Education College Incorporated (COSRECI) is not a registered charity in any country (not has ever been) and as an Australian non-profit association does not fall subject to courts in the UK then does this mean that the mandatory rates relief at 146 Queen Victoria Street has been withdrawn or is about to be withdrawn? I would appreciate clarification on this matter.


    Yours sincerely,

    Roland Rashleigh-Berry

    http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2010/13/pdfs/ukpga_20100013_en.pdf
  13. DeathHamster Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    (nor has ever been)
  14. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    already sent to the CoLCorp
  15. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Your letter dated 10 August 2010 sent to Andrew Colvin LLP‏

    From: Roland Rashleigh-Berry (rolandberry@hotmail.com)
    Sent: 21 December 2010 19:50:16
    To: david.mcdonald@communities.gsi.gov.uk


    Dear Mr McDonald,

    I am reading the letter you sent to Andrew Colvin LLP, Comptroller and City Solicitor, City of London dated 10 August 2010 that I accessed using the link below:

    http://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/45806/response/119088/attach/2/Document.pdf

    In this letter you wrote "any decision on whether a non UK charity is a charity for rating purposes must be made on the basis of whether the body in question is established for charitable purposes". You also write "ultimately interpretation of the legislation is a matter for the courts". Indeed, the courts have already interpreted this legislation in the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation Inc -v- Commissioners of the Inland Revenue case which can be linked to below (scroll down):

    http://www.swarb.co.uk/lisc/IncoT19301959.php

    I have copied the judgements below. As far as I am aware, these judgements are still in effect, although charities in European member states are recently being afforded tax benefits in the UK (such as the Finance Act 2010, Schedule 6). According to the judgement below, "a 'trust established for charitable purposes only', must here mean a trust taking effect and enforceable under the law of the United Kingdom to apply its funds for the purposes which are, according to the laws of the United Kingdom, exclusively charitable".

    In the case of the Church of Scientology Religious Education College Inc (COSRECI), although it may have existed in the UK for some considerable number of years, it can not be said to be "established for charitable purposes" in the UK because, according to the judgement below, it is not subject to the courts of the United Kingdom since it is a foreign non-profit association registered in Australia. COSRECI is not registerd as a charity in any EU member State either (and it is not registered as such in Australia) so I don't see that it qualifies as being "established for charitable purposes" in the UK or any other EU member State, and entitled to mandatory rates relief, due to it not being under the jurisdiction of the UK courts to ensure it applies its funds correctly nor the same in any other EU member State. Hence I think COSRECI should not be entitled to any mandatory (charitable) rates relief in the UK.

    Yours sincerely,
    Roland Rashleigh-Berry
  16. AnonyVix Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Hoping for good results but if they still have "issues" then we'll just have to keep lobbying for more legal changes along the same lines as the 2010 Finance Act to enable them to not have issues. How many laws do they need pointing out the obvious moral choice, no more tax relief for cults?

    Which reminds me the law was changed so Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs could release the list of companies they have registered as charities with them for tax purposes, previously they could only list clubs; they couldn't do this before the law changed because it would have breached existing legislation which inadvertently and unnecessarily protected the cult's privacy.

    Note: IIRC, didn't London make a big deal out of the cost of litigation (£250,000 one off cost up to high court) verses the cost of reclaimed tax (£250,000 but ignoring the fact this would be per year should they win, which they should). I wonder how much it costs to police protests and so how many would have to be done in order to balance the books for them...

    As always excellent work RowlandRB.
  17. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    It might work. It's a bluff, as I don't have the qualifications to write such a letter, but it is the law as it stands and the letter from McDonald must have been a major factor in why the CoLCorp will not drop the rates relief. They fear getting sued and being caught without central government support so they would rather bend the law in the cult's favour.
  18. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    This will almost certainly have to go to judicial review but I am trying every possible option to resolve this issue so that using the courts is truly a last resort and is provably so. I am wanting a clear "fuck off - never write to us again" from Communities and Local Government as well as the ColCorp despite my polite requests so that there is no other option left except the courts. And, of course, I want to trap both parties so the judge can see that they are acting outside the law or at least ignoring the law. Not much fun, really, and takes a lot of my time but I think this has to be done to be fair and respectful of the judicial system. I think the courts should only be used if every attempt to resolve the situation through discussion and communication has been fully tried to the point of exhaustion and final failure.

    Got that? ;o)

    ------------------------------------------------------------------------------
    From: Roland Rashleigh-Berry (rolandberry@hotmail.com)
    Sent: 22 December 2010 11:37:17
    To: Claire Scott (claire.scott@cityoflondon.gov.uk)
    Cc: Paul Nagle (paul.nagle@cityoflondon.gov.uk)


    Dear Claire,

    I spotted what looks like a legal error in a letter sent by David McDonald to Andrew Colvin, Comptroller, sent 10 Aug 2010 regarding mandatory rates relief. I don't know if this is of any consequence but I thought I would inform your office that I have sent an email to David McDonald to this effect and am awaiting clarification.

    http://forums.whyweprotest.net/329-...rates-relief-based-talk-71255/13/#post1381248

    Yours sincerely,
    Roland Rashleigh-Berry
  19. AnonyVix Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Not a bluff.

    Qualifications or not your interpretation of the law is a challenge that cannot just be dismissed as unqualified ramblings because it makes perfect sense (spot on IMO but IANAL either) and the research you have done is of epic proportions in putting together your fact sheet.

    I can say the 2010 Finance act was influenced by input regarding the cult and current loopholes that allow it to get away with no financial oversight.

    It's perhaps not exactly as I would like it yet but the noose is tightening. Basically what the cult does next will determine what other changes are necessary. The cult is good for one thing, identifying weaknesses in legislation.
  20. AnonyVix Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Your plan is well thought out. I wonder how long they can prevaricate before saying effectively fuck off.
  21. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    As you all know, we are preparing for judicial review. We need to be the ones pleading with them to listen to us and bringing up points of law even when they smack us down repeatedly. When they get to the point where our polite pleadings asking them to address these points of law annoy them to the extent where they tell us to fuck off forever, despite there being unresolved points of law that they are not bothered to address, then that gives us an advantage in what will be a VERY difficult action. And I stress a VERY difficult action. We are hardly complainants nor people "of standing". The CoLCorp thing only takes a penny out of our pockets each year. On the other hand, it does devalue the work of real charities in the UK and destroys confidence in them but again, it does not affect us directly except for that penny per year each.
  22. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Another thing is the time limit for bringing judicial review that gives us a problem because we don't know the lie of the land in this ever-changing situation in that we may start an action that is not fully relevant when it comes to court. But at least we are keeping up the communication needed to clarify the situation.

    Somebody has just made a FOI request to the DCLG (Department of Communities and Local Government) for all communications that are a follow-up to Eric Pickles statement to the Guardian made on 15 Oct 2010 urging local authorities not to give rates relief to the clambeds and again, before we can bring this to judicial review, we will need the results of that and will need time to digest this information. That will take at least until the end of Jan 2011.
  23. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    When do we get branded or accused of being "vexatious" in our requests? And if we do then who is "we". I don't know who "we" is. I sit in front of a mirror for hours sometimes wondering who "we" is and then strut around my apartment in my regal dress wearing my red wig but maybe I have it wrong. Maybe I am our leader Tommy Davis but then I can't do the inverted smile without pulling at my mouth. Who am I? Who is Anonymous? :eek:(
  24. charlie Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    I am astounded at the cheek of them , but as they say up here "shy bairn's get ne sweet's" they'v took the piss out of Sunderland city council and got away with it so far .


    [IMG]
  25. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Cheeky. Steele Stewart is out of the loop now so I have to deal with the Sunderland council solicitor directly. I just sent this so too late for reporting typos.
    -------------------------------------------------------------------
    "my client as you know is a South Australian charity"‏

    From: Roland Rashleigh-Berry (rolandberry@hotmail.com)
    Sent: 22 December 2010 14:25:13
    To: victoria.gamble@sunderland.gov.uk


    Dear Mrs Gamble,

    I have only just become aware of this email sent to your council that you can link to below. I am looking closely at the words "my client as you know is a South Australian charity".

    http://forums.whyweprotest.net/329-...rates-relief-based-talk-71255/14/#post1381718

    I am wondering if Peter has full knowledge about the client he is representing. I say that, because this is not the only anomaly I have noticed. Of course, you are free to pass this on to Peter if it may be of use. I sometimes send Peter copies of the documents I write if it could possibly affect the interests of his client so do not think the correspondence I send you needs to be kept confidential. Peter is always welcome to read any communication I send to you in that it may affect the interests of his client.

    The Church of Scientology Religious Education College Inc (COSRECI), the client to whom I assume Peter is referring, has never been registered as a charity anywhere in the world including Australia. It is an Australian non-profit association which is not the same thing as being a charity in Australia. It does not conduct any business in Australia and has not registered any company financial paperwork there for many years.

    The situation about the charitable status in Australia was made clear in a TV program over there called "Today tonight". You can read the text of the program below:
    Scientology tax - Today Tonight

    The Church of Scientology in Australia gave their response to this program that you can read below:
    http://l.yimg.com/ea/doc/-/100622/statement_for_today_tonight_22_june_10-1620t64.pdf

    In their response they wrote the following. I have highlighted some words.


    Church of Scientology Religious Education College Inc is an incorporated non-profit association. Whilst it does have charitable purposes as laid out in its Rules of Association, it is not a registered charity in South Australia or with the Australia Taxation Office. Any claims to the contrary are incorrect and this can be confirmed by searching on the government website at ABNLookup - Welcome to ABN Lookup.


    So you can see that the claims for it to be a charity are in its charitable purposes laid out in its Rules of Association. Since the Charities Act 2006 you will know that to have a "charitable purpose" then it "must be for the public benefit". Again, the highlighting is mine.

    3 The “public benefit” test

    (1) This section applies in connection with the requirement in section 2(1)(b) that a purpose falling within section 2(2) must be for the public benefit if it is to be a charitable purpose.
    (2) In determining whether that requirement is satisfied in relation to any such purpose, it is not to be presumed that a purpose of a particular description is for the public benefit.


    The definition of "public benefit" is not stated in the Charities Act 2006 but instead is entrusted to the Charity Commission. I assume that you know that the Charity Commission turned down an application for charitable registration to the Church of Scientology (England and Wales) in 1999 although this was a different legal entity to COSRECI. But the decision at that time was based on the activities of the Church of Scientology in the UK and at that time, COSRECI will have been conducting those activities. Please check with Peter if there could be any mistake in this.

    I hope this makes the situation clear but if not I am happy to provide further details. Please also check with Peter if this will help.


    Yours sincerely,

    Roland Rashleigh-Berry
  26. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    No response?

    Well it make me laugh so bloody much I had to go for a walk. :eek:)
  27. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    I am awaiting a response to this with bated breath. The more I think about it, the more important this point seems. It alone might undo the rates relief in the UK. Time will tell.
  28. charlie Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk


    Think it's a case of them putting there hand's over there ear's la la la la la la la Roland .
  29. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Which would suit us as well as it would look bad in a court.
  30. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    I think you are right as I got no reply nor acknowledgement so I have forwarded it to Andrew Colvin the Comptroller.

    Edit: I love that word Comptroller. This legal find of mine regarding a legal definition of "established for charitable purposes" in the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation Inc. is too good to be ignored.
  31. charlie Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Could be just on holiday .
  32. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Could be. The trouble with central and local government is that they are on holiday all year. I'm becoming impatient again.
  33. charlie Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    I want a job there LOL .
  34. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Mr Rashleigh-Berry

    Thank you for your emails below.

    I am afraid that there is little that i can add on this matter.

    As you are aware, a decision to grant (or refuse) charitable rate relief is properly one for a local authority to take. And ultimately, any interpretation of the legislation and case law is a matter for the courts.

    However, I can assure you that the Government does understand your viewpoint. It does of course keep all taxes under review and we will certainly keep your views in mind.

    David McDonald
    ------------------------------------------------------
    Totally saying nothing but I think we have got something there with this particular piece of case law and that it should be mentioned high up in any claim for judicial review. Clarification of this is essential and should be played for all it is worth. Foreign charities are not English charities according to this piece of case law and nor can they be said to be established for charitable purposes, though exceptions these days are being made for EU member states registered charities.
  35. AnonyVix Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Glad to see you're still keeping up the good work Roland, hope you had a merry Xmas and wish you and everyone here a happy new year.

    Sometimes I think I'm bashing my head against a brick wall but more recently I see some signs that the wall is beginning to crumble, I'm known for being very strong headed.
  36. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Dear Mr McDonald,

    thanks for your response. On a related subject, I was wondering if and when the new definition of a charity, as given in Schedule 6 of the Finance Act 2010, will be put into effect for the collection of non-domestic rates since it does not make sense to me to have two very different working definitions of a charity. If you have any information on this I would be grateful. I feel that if this definition were adopted for both central and local government then a lot of confusion could be removed.

    I am disappointed that some local authorities choose to give non-domestic rates relief to Churches of Scientology clearly in contravention to the judgment in the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation Inc -v- CIR case in the sense of the clarification of the term "established for charitable purposes". The broad public have become aware of this through the announcement of Eric Pickles on 15 Oct 2010 and it dilutes and demeans the good work of genuine charities in England and Wales which must be feeling the financial pressure in these times.

    Roland Rashleigh-Berry
  37. AnonyVix Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Very nicely phrased.
  38. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Thanks. There is no point having a go at these guys. Better to be nice and to let your views and concerns be known so that hopefully it can be passed on. Every little bit helps, no matter how small.

    What would really help in the UK is people writing letters (hardcopies) to their constituency MPs. If I had to make one recommendation for 2011 to make a big difference in the UK then it would be just that.
  39. charlie Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Dont forget that MPs only deal with there own constituents question's , so they have got to be from the right towns/citys.
  40. RolandRB Member

    Re: London Rates Relief Based Talk

    Absolutely - your OWN constituency MP and send them a hard copy letter that is not a form letter with your name and address on it for a hard copy return.

    All you need to know is your postcode to find out who your MP is and what address to send your hardcopy letter to.

    Search (Find Your MP) - UK Parliament

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