ACNC’s Review Submission Met With Concern From Charity Sector

CCA CEO David Crosbie tells Pro Bono News that “Any doubt about the intention of the new ACNC commissioner to impose an ill-conceived restrictive agenda on all charities can now be dispelled with the ACNC submission into their review. The proposed new objects alone should be a wake-up call to every charity in Australia.

In its submission to the five year Review of the ACNC Acts, the ACNC has called for two new objects:

(a) To promote the effective use of the resources of not-for-profit entities; and

(b) To enhance the accountability of not-for-profit entities to donors, beneficiaries and the public. 

Mr Crosbie said, 

“Who are the ACNC to determine if CCA or any other charity is using their resources effectively? On what basis will effective use be judged – the views of the commissioner?  What does increased accountability mean? Who sets what standards?

“In all my time working with the initial ACNC Task Force and for over three years on the ACNC Advisory Board, not one person at the ACNC ever suggested there needed to be new accountability measures or a capacity to judge the effectiveness of charities. A few days into the role and the new commissioner is trying to scuttle the years of painstaking work to establish agreed objectives and build a credible and respected ACNC that the sector works with.”      

Crosbie warned that the ACNC risked losing its credibility in the sector if it repurposed itself in this way.  

“This is regulatory overreach at its worse, driven by an ill informed ideological campaign to limit rather than enhance the role of charities in our communities,” he said.

“The ACNC needs to be very careful if it wants to maintain the high level of compliance and co-operation from the charities sector. If the ACNC loses standing and credibility with the sector through this kind of overreach, it will cease to be effective.”

Read the full article on Pro Bono News, including comments from Sue Woodward, Acting CEO, Justice Connect.

Other media:

‘Bizarre overreach’: charities fear regulator wants to control their spending, The Guardian, 24 Jan

ACNC regulation proposal met with concern from charity sector, David Crosbie speaks with Fran Kelly, RN Breakfast, 25 Jan

CCA encourages all in the charities and not-for-profit sector and the communites we serve to take an interest in the five year Review of the ACNC legislation.  CCA is preparing a submission in consultation with members.  

Terms of Reference are available on the Treasury website:…

Submissions are due by 28 February 2018, with a final report to be presented to Government by 31 May 2018.