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UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

Discussion in 'Scientology Property Tax' started by Sponge, Oct 15, 2010.

  1. Anonymous Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    veruca_salt.jpg

    That is how most of us imagine roland!
  2. Anonymous Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    if the urge strikes you again, could you port it to the wiki? ta. :)
  3. Anonymous Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Why so defaitist?
  4. RolandRB Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Because with increasing time it looks as though this was just a publicity stunt by the government to make central government look good and local government look bad. There seems to be no official word sent out to local government on this issue judging by the Communities and Local Government website. Local government would need assurances from central government that their legal costs would be covered in case the clams sued but no such assurances are forthcoming.
  5. Anonxmous Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    That document was not written by those who were drafting the act.

    You catch two words somewhere, and you're irrationally delighted about some imaginary police raid you think is going to happen ('within two weeks' if I remember correctly) in Camden.

    And then we get this major leg-up from the relevant minister, and you're irrationally depressed because you imagine it to be done out of self-interest, and of no use.

    Please stop behaving like a puppy.

    You are the reason I've been some spending time on this project most days since I read your document. After WT's FOI legwork, you turned it into a group effort. But you seem to be getting increasingly irrational. That worries me a little. If you need to you know there are enough of us working on this to keep it rolling along while you focus on something other than the cult for a couple of weeks.
  6. Anonymous Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    I understand Roland's frustrations and there may be something to the "publicity stunt" angle since politicians always go for the quick win and only knuckle down if that fails to make the issue go away; it's nothing personal it's simple instinctive behaviour for politicians that has evolved to deal with the myriad of issues they have presented to them daily.

    That said I'm also concerned. Roland you efforts are admirable, (not to belittle everyone else's efforts because I get the impression a lot of others are doing stuff with this besides myself), but you need to take a break for a short while and come back refreshed.
  7. Sponge Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    I'm not so sure that Pickles would be so keen to go so far out of his way to paint himself into a corner or set himself up for U-Turn, all for the sake of some one-off publicity. Pickles has taken a stance, a pretty direct one. He could have made some vague general remark about misuse of business rates relief in general but he didn't. This targetted a particular type of misuse on an underserving organisation. If he wanted maximum publicity with the "scientology" word then the time was just after the BBC got over 4 million viewers for the John Sweeney Panorama documentary, not out-of-the-blue nearly 3 weeks later.
    This is something that he can be called out on if it looks like the local authorities concerned aren't doing anything about it.
  8. Anonymous Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    thinks the whole of the government is a wee bit busy this week. I'm watching Beaker on the news defending the spending review right now.
  9. Heinrich Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Why not use this to send more letters to councils and ask for tax breaks to be removed? Or is this happen now?
  10. Anonymous Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Hmm. I never have written to a council. I generally write to MPs. Maybe this should be tried!

    Be advised, though, that City of London has subcontracted all its business rates collection activities to a private company. The council itself seems to know fuck all about the activity - and they haven't been very smart with regard to the COSREC tax dodge, at least until the BBC and Pickles stepped in.

    ITT we need to win hearts and minds in the general public. Make THEM ask the question, as well as us.
  11. xenubarb Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Show them how much public money is lost by offering Scientology special favors, juxtaposed with the number of public services are being cut for want of funding.

    You'd have to be an idiot not to ask the right questions then!
  12. greebly Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Yup this is not a 5min job.

    Harpoon as mentioned in June in rolands other thread and highlight the "guidance" given by the Minister.

    As also highlighted ITT each council has it's own criteria so when harpooning that council and councillors reference their criteria.

    1. Collect data for front groups and the Co$ in relation to that area and the UK.

    2. Simply reference other external issues and current events in summary(Avoid tinfoil and moonbats). Australia/New Zealand/France/Canada etc.

    3. Point out their criteria vs the above vs the Co$ and "substantial public benefit".

    4. Highlight "revenue" and "donations" from the above.

    5. Make sure it is sent to each councillor, MP and relevant dept in that area.

    6. You could also compare the costs/subsidies vs your own local or national bodies who don't get rates relief, or compare it politically to the "UK Spending review" and where tax pounds could be better spent.
  13. AnonLover Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    in light of the press frenzy this has generated in the short number of days since it first hit (Thks for the list Sponge) I'm surprised no outlet has picked up & regurgitated at least a brief mention of the old story re: london police involvement with the fanfare surrounding the opening of the celebrity centre

    Police officers accepted gifts from Church of Scientology | Mail Online
  14. Bluebell Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Don't need to, just link to first post in the wiki.
  15. SOJOA Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Hope this happens for you guys. Now we need to do it in the States.

    Best of luck
  16. Anonymous Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    In this case the council knows all about it. See the wikipage under docs released so far by CoL.
  17. greebly Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Ofcourse they know about it.

    But when they have recieved a few thousand emails from various residents and governmental parties, they will look a bit deeper.
  18. Anonymous Member

  19. Anonymous Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    That's a very good point. That said I don't expect Pickles to U turn, to say scientology is a benevolent charitable religion - what was the commission thinking of, just that his initial reaction was done in a some what off hand way typical of politicians who believe the issue isn't that big a deal. They make some announcement that creates some publicity and hope that everyone else takes care of it or that no one notices if nothing happens or that they have moved on by the time someone does; many politicians get "shuffled" after they have made noises of intent only to have their replacement claim no knowledge and effectively reset everything - pretty sure that is the one of the intents of cabinet shuffles.

    The trick is as you rightly imply is to follow through fairly quickly with checking if anything is being done and create more noise if it isn't, to keep the ball rolling as it were.
  20. WhiteNight Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

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  21. Anonymous Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    I just read on the news this morning about the UKs spending review and the loss of 460k public sector jobs in the next however many years.

    I read earlier in the thread people asking if now is the proper time to get a hold of your MPs and let them know what's going on with the scientology rates relief issue.

    I think that now indeed would be the time to strike that hot iron. Taxes and how they directly relate to the economy is right now a huge topic.
  22. theLastAnon Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Just dropped in here to say, keep it up you incredible bastards. All of you working on this are winning this battle. Roland, keep your head up. I know you've walked this road for a long time, but remember you're not walking it alone anymore brother, and remember anonymous is full of some tenacious and persistent sons of bitches. Most importantly, remember the road of ahead of you is much shorter than the road you've already traveled to get here.

    For your consideration (I'm a useless cocksucker on this issue, so consider that too):
    1) Organize this a bit like a raid, provide all the pertinent email addys and names of who to poon and why, provide a complete background doc AND bullet points to be used in emails, and put all of this information in a thread titled "Things to Do NOW" or "Action Items: Project ????". Reading over over all the thread titles in the situation room and you have no clue which one to read to find out what to do to help. Update the OP in that thread as things develop.

    If this exists in one place that's clearly marked, please link to it, and let me know I'm too drunk to be online tonight.

    2) If it's possible, use local data for each council...i.e., can we determine how much $ each city would be getting right now if not for the CoS being granted the exemption there?

    3) Develop all those local numbers into a list and do a press release to local media leading with the amount for that particular city and then showing the all the locations and totals.

    4) Reach out to other community groups and organizations, particularly those that are most affected by budget cuts if that's relevant or possible to determine, so they can see the info and encourage them to write their councils also.

    5) (This may be a bridge to far): Create a website (devoid of any connection to us), that allows local citizens to select their particular council members and generate an email to each of them their displeasure over the exemptions. Much like political sites created during issue debates here in the US.

    Again, if this is stupid or has already been organized in one location, tell me to fuck off and point me to it.

    Sorry if this comes off as leaderfagging, cause that is not my intention at all. I love the collaborative effort and just wnated to toss in my thoughts.. And again, I'm drunk on WWP tonight which has led to bad things in the past. :)

    Another thought, doing these things helps give Pickles cover to follow through on what he said and ultimately issue the dox you want Roland. Help him, help you (us).

    /ramblings
  23. anonhuff Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    I am pretty sure that local councils do not fully take most of the financial hit when granting rates relief as that is allocated by central govt based on council approvals? It is a messed up system in that regard, in my opinion.
  24. Anonymous Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    'Mandatory relief' (80% relief) is completely paid from central government funds.

    'Discretionary relief' (the other 20%, only awarded to Scientology by Sunderland) is split between local government funds and central government funds.

    You're absolutely right that it makes very little sense for the local authorities to be allocating money which comes out of someone else's budget. That's a big part of the problem here, because

    - if a local authority does allow an application for mandatory relief then the local authority does not pay for it.

    - if a local authority doesn't allow an application for mandatory relief then they risk being sued by the applicant, which could be costly for them.

    So the financial incentive for all local authorities is to allow all applications for mandatory relief.
  25. xenubarb Member

  26. anonhuff Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Those are excellent points and I was thinking about it for a while after I posted:

    Local councils are granted the power to allocate central government funds through mandatory rates relief (and half their and half central govt funds for discretionary relief). Central government has a body (charities commission) which gives criteria/rulings re: what to consider a charity and what not to for rates relief purposes. Local councils are strongly advised, but not required, to follow said criteria/rulings by the central government. Central government has given no indication that they will defend in court (alongside local councils) their criteria/rulings, as applied by local council. And because local council isn't allocating their own money and indeed could be on the hook if they improperly deny rates relief, even though they would be following guidelines/court decisions set by the central government, it becomes easier to allow mandatory/discretionary relief even when it's clearly not earned or deserved.

    bert_what.gif
  27. AnonyVix Member

  28. Sponge Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Added to the OP:
    British Government warns against tax breaks for Scientology*
    WikiNews 21st Oct 2010
    http://en.wikinews.org/wiki/British_Government_warns_against_tax_breaks_for_Scientology

    [Note: Fixed link. The original link taken from google news refers to a previous edit of the wikinews article which has Eric Pickles government position incorrect. The above link from here will always reflect the latest wiki edit]

    Also added to OP...
    Thanks.
  29. Sponge Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Added to OP, Thanks to Charlie for the heads-up in the Sunderland rates thread......

    Sunderland Echo, Readers Letters, 22nd Oct 2010
    Letters, Friday, October 22nd, 2010 - Letters - Sunderland Echo
    Should the Church of Scientology be exempt from paying £30,000 business rates in Sunderland?
    Sunderland Echo Daily Poll, 23rd Oct 2010
    Daily Poll - News - Sunderland Echo
    Comments open. Requires sign in

    POLL IS ON THE RIGHT HAND SIDE - VOTE NOW PLEASE (No Sign in required)
    DO EET!

  30. Sponge Member

  31. RolandRB Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    I just voted "No". Please, everyone who lands here make your vote one way or another so that the numbers give them confidence of how the public feel about this.
  32. Sponge Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Related:
    On BBC1, as I type, The Politics Show is doing a segment on Charities / local government / spending cuts / funding concerns etc.

    Basically, those charities who's work depends on the public sector for some support, are worried about the huge shortfall. Approx £5billion shortfall (as predicted by the Charities Commission), which will come about due to spending cuts, £1 billion shortfall in local authority funding alone.
  33. Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Scientology is losing on so many fronts.
  34. Anonymous Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Can Birmingham Anons look into whether these Scientology Orgs get Council tax relief?

    How about this one?
  35. Anonymous Member

  36. Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Keep the pressure up, good intentions are cheap, we need money on the table here.
  37. JohnnyRUClear Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Yeah, I'm late and stupid, etc.

    Anyway, this is cool; thanks for the "threads should read" ping.

    Get the charities all scrabbling for the tax relief like a bunch of basketballers going for a loose ball and they'll naturally seek to delegitimize the cult out of simple self-preservation.
  38. Anonymous Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    Scientology centre doesn't get tax relief, council confirms (From Bournemouth Echo)

  39. RolandRB Member

  40. Anonymous Member

    Re: UK Government urges councils to stop giving tax breaks to scientology. WINRAR!!

    ^fuck off

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