Productivity Commission releases its Draft Report on Philanthropy within Australia
Fowler Charity Law Blog
by Mark Fowler
8M ago
Overnight the Productivity Commission released its Draft Report on Philanthropy within Australia. The Report contains some very significant recommendations that will impact upon every charity within Australia if they are maintained within the Commission’s final report due in May next year and if they are subsequently implemented thereafter by the Government.   The following provides a summary of the Commission’s key proposals: The Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) categories are to be streamlined and expanded to include ‘most classes of charitable activities’. This would expand DGR status ..read more
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Housing Australia Future Fund
Fowler Charity Law Blog
by Mark Fowler
9M ago
FCL Principal Mark Fowler published an article in the Canberra Times over the weekend commenting on the Commonwealth Government’s Housing Australia Future Fund. In it he expresses the view that the HAFF legislation has not sufficiently addressed the uncertainties that arise in respect of the charitable endorsements of community housing providers that seek to supply housing to ‘key workers’ under the scheme. Mark Fowler | How does community sector fit into $10 billion housing crisis fix | The Canberra Times | Canberra, ACT ..read more
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ACNC Releases Long Awaited Interpretation Statement on Public Benevolent Institutions
Fowler Charity Law Blog
by Mark Fowler
9M ago
This afternoon the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission released its long awaited Commissioner’s Interpretation Statement on Public Benevolent Institutions. Importantly, Natasha Sekulic, the Acting General Counsel clarifies her view that the ‘updated PBI CIS does not narrow our interpretation of PBI. Charities that are currently registered with the PBI subtype of charity will be entitled to maintain their PBI registration.’ The ACNC’s Interpretation Statements (of which this is but one) intend to provide guidance for the non-lawyer and are a rich resource for charity governors ..read more
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New Minister Responsible for Commonwealth Charities Regulator Announced
Fowler Charity Law Blog
by Mark Fowler
3y ago
The ACNC has announced that Assistant Treasurer, Minister for Housing and Minister for Homelessness, Social and Community Housing, the Hon Michael Sukkar MP, has been confirmed to take responsibility for oversight of the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission. The Hon Michael Sukkar previously held ministerial oversight of the ACNC between January 2017 and August 2018 and has significant experience of the sector. Congratulations are offered to the Minister on his return to this very significant portfolio, one which holds an important role in ensuring the maintenance of good govern ..read more
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Government Announces National ‘Single Registration Point’ for Charitable Fundraising Registration
Fowler Charity Law Blog
by Mark Fowler
3y ago
In a joint press release the Commonwealth Treasurer Josh Frydenburg and Senator the Hon Zed Seselja Assistant Minister for Finance, Charities and Electoral Matters have today announced reforms to the regime regulating fundraising by Australian charities, intended to harmonise fundraising laws by allowing a ‘single registration point’ to issue national approval for fundraising. It is not, however, made clear who the ‘point’ is. The ACNC has long been named as the most obvious candidate, however this is yet to be made clear. The announcement refers only to registration, and it thus appears inten ..read more
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Government Announces Reforms Targeting Unlawful Behaviour by Charities
Fowler Charity Law Blog
by Mark Fowler
3y ago
Earlier this week the Hon. Zed Seselja announced the Commonwealth Government’s intention to introduce legislation in 2021 that will see charities deregistered where they engage in trespass, unlawful entry, malicious damage or vandalism or threaten violence, or where they encourage such conduct. This would expand the existing grounds entitling deregistration for unlawful conduct under ACNC Governance Standard 3, being the commission of an indictable offence, or a breach of law carrying a civil penalty of 60 units. Consultation on the reform will be undertaken in the new year. Details can be fou ..read more
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Discussion Paper Released Proposing Long Overdue Reform to Charitable Fundraising
Fowler Charity Law Blog
by FowlerCharityLaw
3y ago
Exciting things could be brewing for charitable fundraising reform. In some cases if a charity fundraises online, including on social media, it can quite innocently be caught by a raft of State and Territory laws, determined according to where its potential donors access its appeal. The flood of donations, many from international sources, inspired by the 2020 bushfires and the controversy surrounding the Celeste Barber bushfire appeal have led to a renewed focus on the regulation of charitable giving in Australia. The regulatory regime is run by the States and Territories, and much of the law ..read more
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ATO Guidance on Jobseeker Payment for Religious Institutions
Fowler Charity Law Blog
by FowlerCharityLaw
3y ago
The Australian Tax Office has published information for religious institutions seeking to access the Jobseeker payment here ..read more
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Amendments to Ancillary Fund Guidelines During Coronavirus Pandemic
Fowler Charity Law Blog
by FowlerCharityLaw
3y ago
Yesterday Assistant Minister for Charities Senator Zed Seselja announced the Government is creating an incentive for philanthropic funds to give more support to charities during the Coronavirus pandemic. The media release outlining the Government’s intention to amend the ministerial guidelines for public and private ancillary funds that will change the way they are administered during the COVID-19 pandemic can be found here. A disaster has also been declared in respect of the COVID-19 pandemic to allow Disaster Relief Funds to receive tax-deductible donations ..read more
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ACNC Releases Guidance on Assistance to Charities during Coronavirus pandemic
Fowler Charity Law Blog
by FowlerCharityLaw
3y ago
The ACNC has published information on changes to charity reporting requirements and available Federal Government assistance to charities during the Coronavirus pandemic here: https://lnkd.in/gxAAPiS You will also find Information and guidance from the Australian Tax Office here: ato.gov.au/coronavirus ..read more
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