Increased oversight for charities in Florida

A law expected to go into effect in Florida as soon as the governor signs it will give charity regulators more authority to oversee charities and deal with bad actors. Report is by Kris Hundley from Tampa Bay Times: New law will give regulators more oversight of charities.

Here is an overall assessment of the new law:

With the reforms, Florida will have the tools to transform itself from one of the nation’s most lax charity regulators to among the most aggressive. And because the rules apply to any organization that raises money in Florida, the impact of the changes could be felt nationwide.

Some of the provisions of the law:

  • Charities and fundraisers banned in another state will be banned in Florida as well.
  • Fundraisers will have to do background checks for staff who take financial information from donors.
  • Amount of fines will increase.
  • The bill will increase staffing by 3 positions to deal with complaints about charities.

Involvement may be needed from an external CPA:

  • Financial review will be required for charities with income over $500K.
  • Financial audit required for income over a million.

I enjoy seeing the variety of ways states allocate regulatory oversight. In Florida, it is the Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services that oversees charities. In Texas it is the Railroad Commission that regulates oil and gas.

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