Image: Adina Farinango, 2020
Date & Time
Sunday October 3, 2021
This meeting will be hosted online, please register for the meeting by following any of the registration links
A bit of house keeping before the meeting
(1) The meeting will be led by the ICCA's Co-Chairs
(2) Only Indigenous community members are eligible to vote on ICCA activities - If you are unsure about your membership, please email email@example.com
(3) We will open the floor for conversation and questions, but please use the Q&A function in Zoom
(4) We ask that all participants be courteous and kind, and that all contributions are offered in the best interest of the ICCA
(5) All materials needed for participating in the AGM will be provided on this webpage
What is charitable status?
Charitable status is given to a qualifying organization that registers as a charity under the Canadian Income Tax Act.
Once an organization has registered charitable status (i.e. once it is recognized and registered as a charity by Canada), it can access certain benefits or rights under law, and it also takes on new obligations.
What are the benefits of obtaining charitable status?
Some of the main benefits of obtaining charitable status are:
- It can be a major help with fundraising, including because:
1. Registered charities can issue official donation receipts that allow donors to reduce their income taxes.
2. Registered charities can receive gifts/grants from other charities and foundations.
- It can increase public and donor trust and confidence, because of the strong standards for and oversight of registered charities in Canada.
- There are favourable tax exemption rules for registered charities under federal and provincial law.
- There are favourable GST/HST exemption and rebate rules for registered charities under federal and provincial law.
What are the downsides of obtaining charitable status?
Some of the challenges associated with having charitable status are:
- There are additional record-keeping, administrative, and reporting requirements, which can increase demands on staff time and organizational costs for professional advice and services (eg. legal, accounting).
- There is a need for training and strong internal procedures to ensure compliance with the rules around issuing donation receipts, which are commonly misunderstood.
- There are strict limits on the purposes and activities of a registered charity. Purposes must be exclusively charitable, and resources and activities must further the specified purposes. There is also a prohibition on direct or indirect support of, or opposition to, any political party or candidate for public office. (Note that the ICCA Board and Executive Director have reviewed this issue and believe that these limits are unlikely to significantly constrain, or require significant changes to, what the ICCA currently does or plans to do.)
- If a registered charity’s status is later revoked (either voluntarily or by the Canada Revenue Agency due to non-compliance with applicable rules), it generally must transfer all of its assets (after paying any debts and liabilities) to another registered charity.
Why does the ICCA have to change its purposes in order to become a registered charity?
When the CRA reviews the ICCA’s application for charitable status, it will look at our stated purposes to ensure that they are exclusively “charitable”, and will also consider whether the ICCA’s activities further our stated charitable purposes.
Therefore, in preparation for making an application for charitable status, the ICCA needs to ensure that our purposes are charitable and fully reflect the activities that we are doing or intend to do.
The ICCA’s current corporate purposes, which have not been updated in many years, would not meet the CRA’s requirements or accurately reflect how our work and priorities have evolved.
How were the proposed new purposes created?
The text of the proposed amendments to the purposes has been carefully drafted by the ICCA’s lawyer working in close consultation with the Executive Director, following a detailed review of the organization’s work, strategic plan, and aspirations expressed by the Board and members.
The proposed amendments were then considered and discussed by the Board, and approved following minor changes.
The ICCA’s lawyer will give a short presentation at the AGM, to explain what makes purposes “charitable” and why the proposed amendments have been drafted as they have.