The Assistant Treasurer has released for public consultation a Discussion Paper on improving the integrity of public ancillary funds which aims to increase public confidence in the philanthropic sector.
A public ancillary fund is an ancillary fund to which the public can make tax deductible donations, for the purpose of disbursing funds to a range of non-ancillary or ‘doing’ deductible gift recipients. These funds are generally used as vehicles for community fund raising.
In the 2010-11 Budget, the Government announced changes to improve the accountability of public ancillary funds and give Australians more certainty that their donations are being used wisely. The changes will provide trustees of public ancillary funds with greater certainty as to their philanthropic obligations and provide donors and the charitable sector with greater confidence that donations are being used effectively.
The proposed changes introduce a new regulatory framework similar to that introduced on 1 October 2009 for private ancillary funds.
The new rules will apply to public ancillary funds as from 1 July 2011.