The Government have almost smuggled a Bill through Parlia- ment
placing an income-tax of 1 per cent. on the incomes of Charities, for the purpose of paying the expenses of the Charity Commission. The friends of the Charities are indignant, and on Wednesday the Chancellor of the Exchequer was visited by a deputation, so numerous and influential, that he virtually gave up the Bill, admitting that the plan was in details erroneous. So it is, because it perpetuates the absurd ex- emption of the Charities from general taxation. At present, a Charity pays no income-tax,—that is, its managers, what, ever their object, compel the State to make' a subscription to their purposes of fivepence in the pound on all they raise. As Mr. Gladstone once showed, in one of the most convincing of his speeches, there is no reason, either of equity or expediency, for this arrangement ; but BO fierce and so numerous are the philanthropists, that even he, at the height of his financial fame, was compelled to give way. Sir Stafford Northcote, therefore, will not resist ; and the Treasury will go on contributing some 450,000 a year to Charities, of half of which it would, if ques- tioned, disapprove. The proposed tax would have yielded. 226,000 a year, and have defrayed all the expenses of the Com- mission, with a balance over.