The Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission welcomes the findings in the Australian National Audit Office (ANAO) performance report on charity regulation and agrees with all the recommendations.

The audit was conducted to provide assurance that the ACNC is registering charities effectively, including for the benefit of recipients, donors, and the wider community. The audit report - Regulation of Charities by the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission – stated that the ACNC was overall effective in its role.

ACNC Commissioner the Hon Dr Gary Johns said, “We welcome the audit report, which found that the ACNC is doing its job.

“We are gratified that the ANAO recognised areas of ACNC operations that it recommended as models of good practice.

“It is timely that seven years after the establishment of the ACNC, we review our approach to regulation to verify whether it remains fit-for-purpose.”

The ANAO found that the ACNC:

  • has been largely effective in registering charities and partially effective in maintaining the charity register; and
  • has been largely effective in supporting charities to meet their ongoing compliance obligations, particularly by providing guidance and monitoring charities’ compliance; and
  • has been largely effective in promoting the reduction of unnecessary regulatory obligations on registered charities.

The ANAO also made four recommendations: that the ACNC strengthen its processes for assessing charity registration; investigate approaches to improving the integrity of the data on the registry; enhance its compliance framework and operational practices; and amend its performance indicators to measure more directly the impact of its regulatory  activities  on public trust and confidence. 

Dr Johns said, “We agree with all the recommendations contained in the report, which align with our commitment to continuous improvement in delivering effective and efficient national regulation of charities.

“The recommendations will assist us to ensure our settings are appropriate regarding risk, entitlement to ongoing charity registration, data management, and unnecessary regulatory burden.

“We aim to reduce red tape and help charities comply with their obligations without creating a heavy administrative burden on them. We must ensure that the public has accurate information, is adequately protected, and can put their trust in charities, knowing they are well regulated.”

He added: “The ANAO report confirms we are on the right track and provides an objective view of areas for further development and improvement.”

To read the report

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