Liberal Democrat manifesto promises a 23 per cent rate for Gift Aid

Party would also reform taxation of the National Lottery and modernise legislation for social enterprises

The Liberal Democrat manifesto
The Liberal Democrat manifesto

The Liberal Democrats have pledged to introduce a 23 per cent 'single rate' for Gift Aid and change the way the National Lottery is taxed if they won the general election.

Their manifesto, unveiled by party leader Nick Clegg today, says they would also introduce a bill modernising laws for social enterprises, mutuals and cooperatives, and would give responsibility for mutuals to a specific government minister.

The manifesto also says the party would introduce ‘easy giving' bank accounts to make donating to charity simpler.

The pledge to introduce a single rate for Gift Aid at 23 per cent confirms what Jenny Willott, the party's charity spokeswoman, had indicated the rate might be.

The manifesto promises reform of the National Lottery so that it would be taxed on its gross profits rather than on ticket sales. It says the change would increase the amount of money available to good causes.

The document says the party believes that "mutuals, cooperatives and social enterprises have an important role to play in the creation of a more balanced and mixed economy.

"Mutuals give people a proper stake in the places they work, spreading wealth through society, and bringing innovative and imaginative business ideas to bear on meeting local needs."

The manifesto also says the party would streamline criminal record checks so that volunteers would need only one check, which would be portable between organisations and activities.

Educational charities would also be allowed to be involved in delivering state-funded education, the document says.

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