Reply from DCLG to Councillor John Dixon

Discussion in 'Scientology Property Tax' started by A-non-non-anon, Jan 27, 2011.

  1. Cardiff cuoncillor John "StupidScientology" Dixon sent a letter to Eric Pickles' department, asking for clarification of the minister's remarks re: CoS tax exemption.

    He's posted a scan of the document here -

    Roland and others - I trust you can use this.
    • Like Like x 2
  2. xenubarb Member

    This is very, very awesome. Interesting about the govt. dismantling "the parallel Board of Standards" due to mischief and abuse.
    Next step, if they're not cognizant of the facts already, is to let them know all the "drug rehab, eradicating illiteracy, Drug Free Marshals, Youth For Human Rights" are all rubbishy front groups meant to put a smiling face on a rather rabid weasel.
  3. RolandRB Member

    Yes, it is important because it makes the view of central government clear. It is still as Pickles said it. He has not changed his mind.

    I note the date of it. It is the last day of a FOI request so that when they respond to the request they can show that they did something within the original request period instead of having nothing to report. It is still a hot topic and something that could adversely affect peoples trust in central government. It should be a good topic for kicking up a shitstorm for many years to come right until they are closed down.

    MODs, can you change DELG to DCLG in the title as it is the initials of Department of Communities and Local Government?
  4. RolandRB Member

    Abolishing the parallel Board of Standards won't in any way affect the CoS rates relief.
  5. Sponge Member

    That is referring to the last paragraph which sounds like Dixon was also writing to them about a different and more general issue regarding the Local Government Ombudsman and Standards/Ethics committees (re:#stupidscientology). Since we don't have the letter that Dixon sent then we don't know if he was mixing barely related issues or simply using one letter instead of two for the sake of efficiency.
  6. Sponge Member

    For the click-lazy, here's a JPG version of Bob Neill's reply letter in the OP.....

  7. xenubarb Member

    I know, but the abolishing of a bureaucracy is uncommon and a good thing.
  8. RolandRB Member

    It will allow elected Councillors to speak out more freely in the future and this is a good thing. There must be many who keep schtum about Scientology in their area when they would rather speak out.
  9. Anonymous Member

    good letter is good
  10. John Dixon Member

    My original letter is up at now - the reference to the ombudsman was just in passing, in case it jogged his memory as to who I was. Would have preferred something more official, but the middle three paras are pretty clear as to a Government line, which would hopefully give a bit of cover to a local authority withdrawing discretionary relief, and disabuse the notion of any charitable status.

    If anyone was writing to their own Council, feel free to include a copy to let them know that they're not putting themselves at risk if they withdraw the subsidy.
    • Like Like x 6
  11. w2iwlu.jpg

    Welcome, good sir.
  12. RolandRB Member

    Oh, but John, they ARE putting themselves at risk if they withdraw the subsidy. That is why, once granted, it can never be taken away. That is why Sunderland dare not change their minds. The City of Westminster will not change their minds. That is why the CoLCorp will not change their minds. If they try to change their minds and ask the DCLG for support and guidance then they will be told (after a long delay) that they are on their own and will even be given bad advice as to the legality of it. Please understand that these are just WORDS coming out of the DCLG which are just the echoes from Eric Pickles statement. Eric Pickles just sounded off due to the article that appeared in Private Eye to earn the government a few brownie points before the big announcement of cuts from central government the following week. There is no substance behind the words of Eric Pickles. No local authority would DARE take on the legal might of Carter-Ruck as it is clear from the past that they will get no help from central government.

    To read up on this then follow the link below provided by the CoLCorp. See how the CoLCorp wrote to the DCLG intending to remove the rates relief and asked for guidance, only to be told that they were on their own (after a long delay). Note the delay in responses from this department and hence the lack of help to local authorities. Such delays from local government to ratepayer requests would not be tolerated but central government does it and gets away with it. Note that Mr. McDonald wrote to the CoLCorp to say that it was OK if COSRECI were a foreign charity so long at it was established for charitable purposes. Who gave central government the right to redefine the law? It was wrong because the Charities Act 2006 defined a charity as having to be under the jurisdiction of the English courts and this was clearly stated in the Act right at the start of Part 1 (this definition was most likely the result of the Camille and Henry Dreyfus Foundation Inc. -v- CIR (1956) case which produced a judgement that both "charity" and "established for charitable purposes" meant it had to be under the jurisdiction of the English courts). Don't confuse WORDS with commitment. We are dealing with politicians here.

    Here is the promised link provided by the CoLCorp itself. Scroll down to "Other" and COSREC:

    If you read the minutes from the meeting then note that despite what was said by the COSRECI legal representatives, they had indeed applied for rates relief for their headquarters in East Grinstead and were turned down in 1999. You would have thought that both these legal representatives would have known this.

    Would you like to know why the letter from the DCLG to you was dated 25 Jan 2011? It is to do with a FOI request deadline as I will show you. They had to do "something" by that date or face the consequences. The Guardian/Observer and Private Eye newspapers were aware of the deadline and were watching. This is such a hot topic that even the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State had to leap up out of his chair and write you that letter on that date. He had so little time that he wrote you two replies in one. And note well that the last response at the end of the FOI request below changed the assumed subject matter. Clearly, this department was panicked into acting. The DCLG are suffering from a severe case of torpitude.

    I hope that one day you will become an MP and be a champion to this cause. Should you be looking to this and wish to take on a new challenge in the future then here is another small matter for your consideration. It will still be waiting for you the day you get elected:

    About the ex-IR now HMR&C as related to the above:

    Welcome to the SHIT world of UK politics if you choose to go down that path.
  13. John Dixon Member

    Hi - thanks for that, and the information about the wages issue. I know I'm a n00b, and to be honest, I was a bit confused a to why they sent the second letter, as the first one (which was much less helpful) was well within the FoI deadline. While I know they're just words, I thought the third and fourth paragraphs could be useful, even though they carry less force than they would as official guidance, as they show what the mood music at DCLG is on the issue.

    All I can say is that I don't plan to go away - but unfortunately, I'm standing for the Welsh Assembly, rather than Westminster. One thing I will do with this as well, is to see whether there's any mileage in talking to the Local Government Association. I've got much better contacts in the WLGA, but again, I think it's worth doing, even if it's just to confirm to myself whether or not it's a dead-end.
    • Like Like x 1
  14. Good to know you're still down with this.

    The biggest surprise out of #stupidscientology was, IMO, finding honest politicians and ethical solicitors ;)

    And who knows? They might try and open up an Ideal Org in Cardiff...
  15. RolandRB Member

    That's true. According to policy, they are supposed to have at least a city office there selling books. But I think Welsh people are too poor to make it worth their while opening one of their charitable outlets there. How many Welsh people can afford the £41,000 requested donation to go Clear?
  16. RolandRB Member

    Maybe, one day, there will be just one working definition of a charity for tax relief purposes instead of two - one for central taxes and one for local taxes.

    Here is an idea - make representations to the LGA that there is much resentment in some boroughs where charitable rates relief has been granted because in other boroughs it has been refused - with all of the boroughs making their best interpretation of the law. Tell them that if the law were amended such that the same definition of "charity" is used (as per Schd 6 above) for both for central and local government finances then the situation is resolved.

    Another idea, on the "public benefit" front, is to ask those council staff who voted to give rates relief whether they would like their own young family members joining this organisation.
  17. Anonymous Member

    Are you related to Anne Robinson by any chance?
  18. Cheap shots aside, do you have dox, or references, on the "Clams in Wales" policy? I smell an opportunity to troll...

    Also, inb4 Newport State of Mind (which, unlike the state of Clear, actually exists)
  19. xenubarb Member

    Mr. Dixon,

    I wonder if you are familiar with the Camelot Castle Hotel story? It's in Tintagel, Cornwall, near your bailiwick. The CCH story might be relevant to your interests, as Polish workers are allegedly constrained under harsh conditions, kept in squalorous housing, and forced to take Scientology courses, at their expense, in order to remain employed.

    The BBC did a good profile on Camelot Castle Hotel. Unfortunately, they don't address the foreign worker issue, in my mind the most important as human rights and exploitation are involved. Please watch this short report and spread the word to Cornwall. While not representing the Scientology organisation per se, the Scientologist owners of the hotel seem to be trying to make it into a center of some sort.

    The important thing to know is, these two hoteliers are doing it by the book...written by L. Ron Hubbard.
  20. RolandRB Member

    No Clams in Wales policy as such but every European country is supposed to have at least a City Office in their capital city.

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