The Tax Institute welcomes the opportunity to make a submission to the State Revenue Office (SRO) in relation to draft revenue ruling LTA-009 Land tax – Charity exemption (Draft Ruling).
In the development of this submission, we have closely consulted with our Victorian State Tax Committee and National Not-for-Profit (NFP) Technical Committee to prepare a considered response which represents the views of the broader membership of The Tax Institute.
The Tax Institute welcomes guidance that will assist charitable institutions (and other impacted landholders) to understand their eligibility for exemptions from land tax pursuant to sections 37 and 74 of the Land Tax Act 2005 (Vic) (the Act). It is important to ensure that such entities have access to guidance material that is simple to understand, readily accessible and supports them to
satisfy the Commissioner to the extent required to access the exemption. This will reduce the cost of seeking an exemption (an important aspect of the policy of the exemption) and otherwise to ensure any non-landholding charity involved in the process, for example, as an occupant of the land, is not excessively burdened by the process.
We consider that the Draft Ruling requires certain revisions to better achieve this objective. In particular, the analysis of the occupation requirement requires clarification and clearer guidance is needed in relation to tenancy arrangements involving social housing providers.