Gloriavale leaders defend tax status

A report filed by Charities Services shows the community has $41.2 million in assets. Photo / Supplied
A report filed by Charities Services shows the community has $41.2 million in assets. Photo / Supplied

Leaders of the Gloriavale Christian Community have opened up to the public after revelations the group has more than $40 million in assets.

The controversial group placed an advertisement in the Greymouth Star on Saturday to defend their tax status.

READ MORE: Gloriavale assets grow to more than $40 million

A report filed by Charities Services shows the community has $41.2 million in assets, compared to $36.6 million in 2014.

The advertisement said the group pays company and personal income tax, and no one in the community takes welfare benefits, ACC payments or student loans.

"People are asking about our life, our trust, and if we pay tax," the advertisement said.

"No one owns anything personally, nor lives to care for themselves, but all work and share in love together to provide for everyone equally, including the widows and fatherless, and the aged, sick and infirm.

"Leaders receive nothing extra, but if there is any shortage, they gladly go without to provide for others."

The community created The Christian Church Community Trust to "own and provide all the land, buildings, livestock, plant and machinery and other assets needed for this Community way of life".

"We have never asked for or received any donations for this Trust from anyone outside Gloriavale. All donations to this Trust have come only from Christian Community members.

In the early years, all funds came from founding members of the Christian Community who donated their inheritance money or sold their houses, land and other assets, and donated the proceeds to the Trust.

These funds enabled the Trust to purchase the initial land, buildings, livestock, plant & machinery, vehicles and other assets needed to live in the Christian Community.

"The Trust's land has greatly appreciated in value since then."

The community's companies include Air West Coast, Forest Gold Honey, Prospect Energy and Caring Midwives.

In the past year the Department of Internal Affairs has been investigating the trust's charitable status.

The police and Child Youth and Family have been investigating the community after claims children had been subjected to physical abuse. No charges have been laid.

- NZ Herald

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