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Conference clubs reduce debt to HMRC

Clubs in the Football Conference have reduced their total debt to HM Revenue & Customs by 1.2m in the last 12 months.

The figures include monies owed for PAYE, NIC and VAT for all member clubs with the total dropping to 1.6m to below £400,000.

The news comes during a financially challenging time for clubs in Non-League football with thirteen clubs having been subject to a winding-up petition, six ceasing to trade, and another entered into a CVA within the last three years in the Conference alone. 

All clubs in the Conference are required to submit a return regarding their financial trading quarterly.  The latest report also showed that 47 clubs were fully up to date with HMRC payments as opposed to 39 last season with only three clubs having issues which have led to player embargos. 

Commenting on the results, Conference chairman Brian Lee stated: “We are really pleased with the improvements seen in the report to the Board. It is good news that there has been a substantial decrease owed to the Revenue but that is only part of our overall strategy to achieve a debt free membership. Collectively the Football Conference has been derided in certain sections of the football community for our stance.
 
"We are heartened to see our strong stance on these issues being rewarded. The accounts each club must now submit on a quarterly basis allows us to be proactive in offering assistance where we can but we have scope and wish to see other areas tightened up. Until the member clubs receive details of the proposals to be introduced next season it would be wrong at this stage to say anything publicly for obvious reasons."

Despite the improvements, Lee gave a stern warning to clubs who disobey the rules.
 
“Clubs have to be honest and trust us to keep all matters confidential. The message we are sending out though is clear. For those who wish to mislead, give inaccurate or false information; there will be severe sanctions,” Lee added.

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