On Monday 9 May 2016 the Governor-General at the Prime Minister’s request dissolved both Houses of Parliament, paving the way for an election on 2 July 2016.
Until the next government is formed following the election, the government will follow the caretaker conventions. This means that the government will not make major policy decisions without first consulting the opposition, however business as usual work will continue.
For the ACNC this means that we will continue to administer the ACNC Act, but we will not enter into agreements or make decisions that will bind the next government to a particular course of action.
In a practical sense, our Advice Services team will continue to assist charities via phone and email, we will continue to progress applications to register new charities, and members of the public can still raise concerns about registered charities.
For more information on the caretaker conventions observed by the government prior to elections, visit dpmc.gov.au
As I foreshadowed in my last Commissioner’s Column, the tenure of the ACNC Advisory Board comes to an end on 14 May 2016.
On Thursday 5 May 2016, the Treasurer, the Hon Scott Morrison MP, confirmed the new board’s membership:
- Mr Tony Stuart – Chair (new member/Chair)
- Ms Fiona McLeay – Deputy Chair (continuing member/Deputy Chair)
- Professor Myles McGregor-Lowndes (continuing member)
- Ms Gina Anderson (continuing member)
- Professor David Gilchrist (new member)
- Mr Martin Laverty (new member)
- Dini Soulio (continuing ex-officio member representing South Australia)
- Dale Webster (continuing ex-officio member representing Tasmania)
- Cindy Bravos (continuing ex-officio member representing Northern Territory)
- Linda Mallet (continuing ex-officio member representing New South Wales)
I would like to take this opportunity to welcome the new board members, including the Chair. I very much look forward to working with them and seeking their expert advice.
I would also like to pay tribute to the outgoing board members, Mr David Crosbie, Ms Sheila McHale, Mr Paul O’Callaghan, Mr Anthony Lang, and the Chair, Mr Robert Fitzgerald AM.
The support and good counsel from the inaugural ACNC Advisory Board made an immeasurable contribution to the success of the ACNC in the first three and a half years. I wish all outgoing members the very best for the future.
I want to particularly thank the outgoing Chair, Mr Robert Fitzgerald AM for providing outstanding guidance and support to the ACNC and to me personally as Commissioner. He maintained calm steady governance during the establishment of the ACNC - a period of great uncertainty for the new regulator. This involvement continued decades of advocacy and support for the not-for-profit sector in Australia. No doubt, Robert will contribute again to the sector in the future.
The ACNC is pleased that the Government has introduced rotation into the Advisory Board appointments with those members of the original Advisory Board retained for a period of eighteen months, and new members being given three year terms.
New guidance on fundraising
Last week the ACNC published new guidance to help members of the public and donors understand charity fundraising. The frequently asked questions cover issues such as:
- Fundraising regulation in Australia
- How and why charities fundraise
- What the public can do if they do not want to be approached by fundraisers
- The Do Not Call Register
- Information privacy
- The role of the ACNC and ATO
You can read more at acnc.gov.au/fundraisingFAQs
Susan Pascoe AM
Our phone number is 13 ACNC (13 22 62) or you can email us at email@example.com.
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