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Don’t Let Bad Behavior Take You Down

Susan takes money out of a cash register. Is that right or wrong? Certainly, we all know that’s wrong. But what if she “borrows” a piece of equipment without asking? Takes a sizeable gift from a vendor? Enters into a relationship with a company with less-than-stellar practices itself? Business ethics come into play when a … Continued
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Mandatory Audit Rotation Not Always Good Governance

Any firm with a not-for-profit niche has likely lost audit clients because of audit rotation. This is primarily because of two closely related issues that impact the effectiveness and efficiency of not-for-profit audits. First, the definition of audit rotation is often misunderstood. Second, audit pricing has become commoditized. There is great value in keeping the … Continued
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A Friendly Reminder about Your Charity Donations

With a new school year beginning and the fall season approaching, you’ll probably get donation requests from organizations, school groups and sports teams as they use fundraisers to build financial support. If you have itemized deductions on your personal tax return, you’ll have to keep in mind certain tax rules before you claim the amount … Continued
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Booster Clubs and Fundraising

The Internal Revenue Service has issued a warning to booster clubs that conduct fundraisers that they may be subject to IRS scrutiny, including jeopardizing the groups’ 501(c)(3) status. An IRS directive addresses the possible tax consequences for booster clubs that reduce the amount a participant is required to pay based on the amount of fundraising … Continued
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Helping Your Organization Tackle the Dreaded Budget Process

Developing the budget. It may be one of the most dreaded aspects of running a nonprofit organization, especially over the past few years when donors dried up and investments shrank. However, this task doesn’t have to be so daunting. Here are a few tips. Have a clear mission and objectives for the organization. It may … Continued
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When Cutting Expenses, Set Tone at Top and Use a Critical Eye

A year ago, a nonprofit might have received a grant for $250,000; this year they might get $125,000 and next year, they may not receive anything, Van Benschoten said. Investments and real estate that used to provide operating expenses are down and so are memberships. And counting on fundraising may not be practical, because the … Continued
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Leadership in Not-for-Profits

When someone agrees to serve on your board of directors, how can you help them succeed? Below are tips to help develop productive, successful board members. Offer Orientation Share the inner workings of the organization by explaining everything from what each staff member does, to how bills are paid, to seasonal or cyclical nature of … Continued
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Merging Questions

As today’s not-for-profit organizations face the challenges of decreasing funds, fewer volunteers and increasing demand for services, one popular solution has been to combine forces in partnership with other groups and occasionally merge. The right partnership can allow the smaller organization to preserve its programming and services with fewer overhead costs and gain the fiscally … Continued
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Not-for-Profits: Fraud and the Role of Internal Controls

The not-for-profit sector plays an increasingly important role in fulfilling the desire for a civil, compassionate and well-functioning society whether it is arts, advocacy, civic, cultural, education or health and human service organizations. Nonprofit Fraud Prevention The stewardship, transparency and accountability of not-for-profit organizations are critical not only to its public standing but ultimately the … Continued
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Nonprofits Vulnerable to Fraud, But Not Powerless

No business is immune to fraud, but not-for-profit organizations (NPOs) may by their very nature be more vulnerable than their corporate brethren. NPOs must operate on trust, and often on a shoestring budget. Frequently, their businesses, which can involve significant cash donations, are conducted by a mix of volunteers and employees who may be dedicated … Continued