ACNC to Release Regime Guide
Wednesday, 6th June 2012 at 1:06 pm
The soon-to-established Australian Charities and Not for Profits Commission (ACNC) will next week release an implementation report which will give the sector a guide to how the new regulatory regime will work.
The ACNC’s interim commissioner Susan Pascoe told the Building Partnerships between Government and Not for Profits conference in Canberra that legislation for the ACNC would not be introduced to Parliament until August.
Further, the legislation would be introduced in two phases allowing for further consultation and feedback on government standards and financial reporting relevant to charitable organisations and Not for Profits.
The implementation report to be released on June 12, which builds on a discussion paper released in December, would help bridge an information gap about what charities and Not for Profits can expect going forward, she said.
It will include crucial information around the proposed Charity Passport and proposed powers of the new regulator.
Pascoe said the ACNC which was to start operating from 1 July 2012 would now open its doors – or website – on 1 October 2012. The commission will be based in Collins St in Melbourne from mid-June, with a presence in Canberra.
Charities already endorsed and registered by the Australian Tax Office will be automatically registered with the ACNC from 1 October, 2012.
Members of the public seeking information on charities and other Not for Profit organsiations will have access to much of the information on the ACNC website from 1 July 2013.
The ACNC will initially be responsible for determining the legal status of groups seeking charitable, public benevolent institution, and other NFP benefits on behalf of all Commonwealth agencies.
The Commission will also implement a 'report-once use-often' reporting framework for charities to eliminate the need to repeatedly provide information such as for the application of multiple grants, provide education and support to the sector on technical matters.
Pascoe told the conference that concerns around the ACNC adding more red tape rather than reducing it were unfounded.
Rather the Charity Passport would mean that new charities would need to only provide information through one portal and that all other governments and departments needing information about that charity would then use that information.
Pascoe said the ACNC would not be a “toothless tiger” and where there was evidence of serious, wilful wrongdoing by an organisation the new regulator would have the power to take action including the deregistration of that organisation.
“We know that people don’t want a toothless tiger,” she said.