Charities urged to use payment pledge

Public bodies must pay sector contractors within 10 days

Charities and social enterprises should make sure they take full advantage of the 10-day payment commitment in the Government's recession action plan, according to charity legal and policy experts.

The action plan, launched last month, includes a pledge to urge public bodies to pay third sector organisations within 10 days of an invoice being received.

Ann Blackmore, head of policy at the NCVO, said it was important for the Communities and Local Government department to tell councils about the measure. Some local authorities had been reluctant to meet 30-day payment commitments, she said.

"We need to publicise this to smaller charities and ensure they know this is available," she said.

A spokeswoman for law firm Bates Wells & Braithwaite said charities should ensure the 10-day payment was written into all new public contracts, and that charities should put pressure on any organisations reluctant to meet the terms.

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