SUMMARY The New Zealand Charities Commission is to be disestablished due to a duplication of government functions, while Australia is setting up its Australian Charities & Not-For-Profits Commission.

Charities and Not-For-Profit organisations in Australia will be interested to know that while the Federal Government is setting up the Australian Charities and Not-For-Profits Commission (which is planned to complement the activities of the Australian Taxation Office), the Government in New Zealand has decided that the New Zealand Charities Commission is unnecessary, carrying out a duplication of functions of Government, and has ordered its disestablishment.

Minister Tony Ryall announced that the transfer of functions from the Charities Commission to the Department of Internal Affairs, which will provide for independent registration and other services through a Statutory Board, will result in a saving of $2.032 million in the four years from 2012/2013.  The transition is expected to cost the Government $300,000.00.

With the ACNC Implementation Task Force conducting its public consultations, it will be interesting to see whether the public is of the view that the Federal Government’s expenditure on a separate commission established to carry out some of the functions of the Australian Taxation Office and some new functions related to transparency and education justifies the expenditure of the Federal Government in Australia.

The New Zealand Charities Commission was set up for a period of four years and is the first Charities Commission of the nations of the Commonwealth to be disestablished.