Where are we up to in charity regulation?
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Where are we up to in charity regulation?. Susan Pascoe AM: Commissioner, Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC) Better Boards Conference , Adelaide, 2 August 2014. Overview. Policy Context NFP Sector in Australia ACNC key functions

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Where are we up to in charity regulation

Where are we up to in charity regulation?

Susan Pascoe AM: Commissioner,

Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission (ACNC)

Better Boards Conference,

Adelaide, 2 August 2014



  • Policy Context

  • NFP Sector in Australia

  • ACNC key functions

  • ACNC charity regulation and Board obligations

  • Benefits of registration and regulatory oversight

Policy context

Policy Context

  • Government intention to abolish ACNC, archive charity register, implement self reporting and return registration and regulatory oversight to ATO

  • Senate voting intentions unclear

  • ACNC continuing to pursue dual role:- administer the ACNC Act and Charities Act and retain charity regulator as viable agency, and support transition planning for transfer of functions to ATO.

Scope of the nfp sector

Scope of the NFP sector

  • Estimated 600,000 not-for-profit (NFP) groups

  • About 60,000 charities (welfare, education, religion and other recognised charities)

  • 4% of GDP/ $58 billion*

  • Averaging 6% growth p.a*

  • More than one million employees* – 9% of Australia’s employees

  • More than 6 million volunteers

    Sourced from 2012-13 ABS Satellite Accounts

Where are we up to in charity regulation

The ACNC: our functions


Reporting & Compliance

Advice, guidance & education, research & policy

Register, Charity Passport, research & data-sharing

The acnc objects and executive team

The ACNC: Objects and Executive Team

  • Maintain, protect and enhance public trust and confidence in NFP sector

  • Support sustainable, robust, vibrant, independent and innovative NFP sector

  • Contribute to red tape reduction

Regulatory obligations of charities

Regulatory obligations of charities

Ongoing obligations

  • maintain ongoing entitlement to registration as a charity

  • notify ACNC of significant changes:-

    • Charity name and address for service

    • change to responsible persons (board, committee members or trustees)

    • changes to governing documents

    • significant non-compliance

  • keep records

  • submit Annual Information Statement to ACNC

  • comply with governance standards

    NB: Size affects obligations

  • 2014 annual information statement

    2014 Annual Information Statement

    • 2013 info will be pre-populated in 2014 statement

    • Annual Financial Report required for the first time from medium and large charities

      • voluntary for small charities

      • reviewed or audited for medium charities

      • audited for large charities

    • To ensure integrity of Register, will ask for governing documents and responsible person information

    • Fixes some common reporting errors from 2013 (such as definition of ‘basic religious charity’)

    2014 annual information statement1

    2014 Annual Information Statement

    Summary of requirements

    Where are we up to in charity regulation


    Graduated Sanctions




    Charity regulation benefits for charities

    Charity regulation: Benefits for charities

    • Badge of credibility as a registered charity

    • Access to Cth tax concessions and other benefits

    • Visibility through Charity Register = single point of contact (one stop shop) for public, donors, funders etc

    • Online ACNC Charity Portal to provide info in real time and store core information

    • Over time, reduced red tape through streamlined regulatory requirements and Charity Passport (enabling report once, use often with core charity information such as Annual Information Statement, charity documents, registration history, charitable purpose history, responsible persons, ACNC enforcement outcomes)

    Charity regulation benefits cont

    Charity regulation: Benefits cont.

    • Use Register to find out information about other charities

    • Through Register, increased accountability and transparency of sector – greater trust & confidence

    • Dissemination of info and research about sector ( EY & Curtin research)

    • Regulatory oversight – take action against charities doing wrong thing – maintaining trust and confidence for benefit of other charities and the community

    • Timely advice, guidance & education

    Where are we up to in charity regulation

    ACNC Register: story so far

    4.4 million

    Finding out more www acnc gov au

    Finding out more: www.acnc.gov.au

    Commissioner Column (almost 9,000 subscribers)

    Web guidance, podcasts and videos

    #AskACNC coming to a location near you over August

    Phone: 13 ACNC (13 22 62) 9am to 6pm AEDST

    Email: [email protected]

    Social media: facebook.com/acnc.gov.au

    twitter.com/acnc_gov_au youtube.com/ACNCvideos

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