Nick Miller and Simon Bowden talk about understanding the new regulator (the ACNC), its power and responsibilities.

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Simon Bowden

So what do you think organisations that are currently preparing for this regime notwithstanding the lack of detail about it should be doing?

Nick Miller

Well two main things Simon. One of those is to think about what the governance arrangements the organisation presently comprise.  That might be the constitution or the rules or the trust deed.  It might also be a board charter.  There might be some obligations in the governance space that are open to funders or possibly to the ATO.  So identify what those are.  Secondly, there's going to be a major change in the perspective that governance will have.  At the present time both not-for-profit and for profit organisations, the responsible individuals or directors owe duties to the organisation as a whole, typically regarded as the shareholders en masse.  However for not-for-profits and charities from 1 July of this year, it looks as if that’s going to change and there's going to be a broader perspective required.  So, those responsible individuals will need to have regard to a broader range of stakeholders.  Not just the members but also to the government, to other funders, to donors, to volunteers - and that’s a really big shift in perspective that those responsible individuals or directors will really need to take some time to digest and understand what that means for their organisation and how their governance needs to be structured to take account of those different perspectives that they need to have regard to.