Charity cuts meeting with MP
6:00am Wednesday 11th September 2013 in News
HUNDREDS of Bolton residents were invited to meet David Crausby MP to discuss the Government’s controversial plans to restrict the spending of charities and campaign groups.
The Bolton North East MP has received more than 200 letters and emails from local residents who are concerned that the Transparency of Lobbying Bill will fail to tackle professional lobbyists but will impose unfair restrictions on charities, blogs, campaign groups and other sections of civil society.
The Bill would set a £390,000 cap on the amount that any organisation — excluding political parties — could spend across the UK in the year before an election. Campaigners have raised concerns that the definition of what activity this covers is so broad that talking about almost any issue of public interest could lead to the cap being imposed. This could hinder the work of charities and stop many people from engaging in discussion of key issues that affect the country, Mr Crausby said.
Mr Crausby met with people in his office to share their concerns. He said: “I was happy to meet with constituents, who clearly expressed their worries about this legislation. David Cameron likes to talk about the big society and encourages people to get involved, but this legislation could be seriously detrimental to public engagement and prevent many people from voicing their opinions on the issues of the day.”
“I agree that we need to take action to regulate professional lobbyists, but this Bill fails to do that. I hope that the Government listens to reason and makes some serious amendments to the Bill and that it faces proper scrutiny in Parliament, otherwise I will vote against it.”
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