Incorporated Societies Act 2022
Enacted in April 2022 and replacing the 1908 act, the Incorporated Societies Act 2022 requires all incorporated societies to register under the new act. This opens from October 2023 through to April 2026 (i.e. 2.5 years to register under the new act). In the meantime, incorporated societies operate under the old 1908 act. The regulations are currently being developed to support the new act and is the reason new registrations are not yet open.
Some significant changes under the new act:
There will be auditing requirements and details of this will be subject to consultation in August 2022. There will also be a requirement to have a documented disputes resolution procedures and and Schedule 2 of the new act provides a template that can be adopted. New members will need to give their consent to become a member and so a process should set-up for this. Registration under the new act also allows an opportunity to update the society's constitution.
The Incorporated Societies Act 1908 has become outdated and is currently under review. An exposure draft bill was circulated in October 2015 with submissions received by June 2016.
These submissions are currently being collated and an updated bill is to be tabled before parliament later this year (2018).
The new bill has implications on governance as well as reporting. It also prohibits a member from auditing the society as there is a lack of independence.
Currently there are no compulsory financial reporting format requirements for the annual financial statements of Incorporated Societies. This means that Incorporated Societies are not required to follow Generally Accepted Accounting Practice (GAAP) or a non-GAAP standard, unless they are registered charities, in which case the reporting requirements for charities applies. The bill proposes that GAAP must be applied for all not-for-profit entities and that either GAAP or a non-GAAP statement apply for for-profit entities.
Here's a link to the bill exposure draft that was previously issued:
A link to the submissions received:
USING CLOUD COMPUTING SECURELY
"Cloud Computing" has been bandied around like some silver bullet that will save you from your computing miseries, but is also associated with security issues and hacking of personal details. What then is "Cloud" Computing" how can I use it in a manner that will assist me and limit the risks involved?
"Cloud Computing" as it is referred to, is the use of the internet to save your files, photos, music, etc for personal or business use. There are applications that are cloud based, in that the program does not reside on your computer but on a server that you access utilising the internet, and there are cloud servers where you can store your data, such as Dropbox, Google Drive and Sky Drive.
The WIKIPEDIA definition is "Cloud computing is internet-based computing in which large groups of remote servers are networked to allow the centralized data storage, and online access to computer services or resources."
Unfortunately, as with your own physical home, when you have valuables or the potential to have valuables, you can be a target to those who want to rip you off. There is no 100% safe on-line solution. However, some cloud servers offer a two-tiered security system. The first level is your password and the second level, a code that you key in and has been text to your phone. This is similar to security that some banks use for on-line banking.
A good, strong password is nevertheless the best way to secure your information. A strong password should have at least fifteen characters, with both uppercase and lowercase letters, has numbers, is very different to your previous passwords (so doesn't follow a pattern), is not a dictionary word or a common name, has keyboard symbols and does not follow a keyboard pattern. There are programs that can generate secure passwords. Here's an example that has been generated: S699B%Twt=94XgB and has been suggested by https://strongpasswordgenerator.com/.
The problem with creating such a secure password is that it is very difficult to remember. So how do you remember a secure password? A simple way to solve this is by writing the password on a piece of paper and keeping this in a safe place, e.g. in your wallet. This keeps your password "off-line".
Another way is to make-up a password from three words and combine them, even all in lowercase, to make a password of 15 letters or more. Although not as secure, it will still take a long time to crack it. Intersperse some symbols and numbers and then it's even stronger, but still relatively easy to remember.
Here's a useful site to try out various types of passwords to see how secure they are: https://howsecureismypassword.net/
Enjoy being creative in devising strong, secure passwords!
As from the 2016 financial year, charities are required to prepare their annual financial statements based on new reporting standards. In the XRB Standard A1, charities are referred to as Public Benefit Entities (PBE's).
The fist thing to consider is if the entity (trust, company, society) is a Public Benefit Entity (not-for-profit) or if it is a for-profit entity. An op shop, for example, if it is a separate entity and the purpose is to provide funds to a trust that owns the entity and the trust is a not-for-profit, by virtue of the fact that the op shop's purpose is to make a profit and return this profit to a not-for-profit, means that it is in fact a for-profit entity.
The degree of complexity is based on size ($ annual operating expenses) and whether or not the charity has public accountability (generally if it is listed or is a bank, credit union or insurance provider). There are four tiers.
Tier 4 allows financial statements to be prepared on a cash basis.
The Charities Commission is encouraging charities to commence using the new standards before they become obligatory.
If you'd like to know more about how this will impact on your charity or interested in us assisting with preparation of your annual financial statements or even to set-up monthly management reporting for you, give me a call.
the need for vision...
Proverbs 28:18 says “Where there is no vision, the people perish” or another version - "Where there is no vision, the people run wild; but happy is he who keeps the law." We need vision to keep focused and not "run wild".
The best vision we can have is a God-given vision for our lives or for our family or business. A prophetic vision. If your business is "running wild" maybe it's time to get on your knees and ask God for that prophetic vision.
Pray as in Psalm 125:4 "Do good, O LORD, to those who are good, to those who are upright in heart." God wants to bless us so that we can bless others from the overflow.