Australia’s first Charities and Not-for-profits Regulator

August, 2012

Is your organisation ready?

 

On 1 October 2012, Australia’s first charities and not-for-profits regulator, the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission (ACNC), will begin operation.

There has been a lot of coverage about this, but what does it really mean for your organisation in a practical sense, once the ACNC is up and running?

In light of the release of an Implementation Report by the ACNC Implementation Taskforce and with 1 October looming, we highlight the latest news concerning this regulator and some of the practical implications for organisations so that you can be certain concerning what is in store for your particular organisation.

Latest News

To recap, at the moment charities in Australia are regulated by Federal, State and Territory laws. The ACNC is intended to be a one-stop shop for charities to streamline their regulatory and reporting interactions with Government agencies. This will reduce the red-tape for charities and also allow the public to access information about charities from the one place, which will encourage transparency and promote public trust and confidence.

The Government has set up an ACNC Implementation Taskforce which has been busily working to prepare for the start of the ACNC’s operation. The Implementation Taskforce has recently released an Implementation Report (Implementation Report) setting out the planned implementation process which will be rolled out in phases over the coming years and also some new details about the registration process.

The Implementation Report looks at 5 key action areas that will underpin the ACNC’s functions:

1.   Registering entities – charities will be registered on an online register;\

2.   Developing a reporting framework – the reporting requirements are yet to be finalised but the aim is to cut red-tape by requiring charities to report once to the ACNC, so that other Government agencies can access that information, rather than asking the charities for the same information;

3.   Going online – charities and the public will be able to access certain information on the ACNC website (live from 1 October 2012);

4.   Helping charities and the public – the ACNC will provide charities with guidance and general advice and education about good governance, accountability and transparency; and

5.   Engaging with stakeholders – the ACNC has and will continue to engage with various stakeholders about its plans.

What does it mean for your organisation?

There are several practical points for you to be aware of, taking into account the recent information provided in the Implementation Report:

 

Information in this article was obtained from the Charities and Not-for-Profits commission – implementation taskforce websitewww.acnctaskforce.treasury.gov.au and the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission Implementation Report prepared by the Australian Charities and Not-for-Profits Commission ACNC Implementation Taskforce.

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