The Charity Commission should "hunker down in the role of an effective regulator of charities" in response to its reduced resources, according to Nick Hurd, the Minister for Civil Society.
In an interview with Third Sector before the regulator’s annual public meeting in London today, Hurd said: "It has been drawn, through a desire to help, to giving more general advice and support. But its priority must be regulation."
Hurd said he was "sure there was something to be done" in the area of more efficient co-regulation between the Charity Commission and HM Revenue & Customs, a point also raised by the shadow charities minister, Gareth Thomas, when he spoke to Third Sector last week.
"We can talk to those two organisations about how that could be achieved," said Hurd.
Hurd said that he had met and interviewed William Shawcross, the new chair of the commission. The author and journalist’s appointment has attracted criticism from MPs on the Public Administration Select Committee because of an article supporting the Conservative Party before the last election.
"I thought he was the stand-out candidate," Hurd said. "I didn’t really know what his politics were. He doesn’t strike me as a political animal at all."