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Acevo calls on government to allow charities to pay trustees

Acevo calls on government to allow charities to pay trustees
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Acevo calls on government to allow charities to pay trustees 3

Governance | Vibeka Mair | 24 Sep 2012

Acevo is urging government to act on Lord Hodgson’s recommendation to allow charities to pay their trustees, arguing that a ‘substantial minority’ of charity CEOs agree with the principle.

Acevo quizzed 218 charity chief executives on recommendations from Lord Hodgson’s review of the Charities Act 2006 and found 24.8 per cent could envisage their charity taking up the power to pay their trustees over the next five years.

In a letter to minister for civil society Nick Hurd, Sir Stephen Bubb, chief executive of Acevo, argues that while most charities do not wish to pay their trustees, the ultimate power to decide should rest with an individual charity, rather than the Charity Commission – which currently decides in most cases.

Lord Hodgson has recommended that charities with an income of £1m or more should have the power to pay their trustees. Acevo’s survey also found that just under half (48.6 per cent) of charity CEOs supported charging new charities to register with the Charity Commission, however the vast majority (84.4 per cent) were opposed to the Commission charging for the filing of annual returns. Some 36.5 per cent were in favour of levying a penalty if charity accounts were filed late.

Sir Stephen has told Hurd that Acevo would accept a charge for new registrations and a penalty for filing accounts late if both fees were reasonable, but not a charge for the filing of annual accounts.

Sir Stephen also warns against the proposal to abolish National Exemption Orders, arguing it could just hit many larger charities hard, without making life easier for smaller charities.

The government will devise its own traffic-light system to rate Lord Hodgson’s 113 Charities Act review recommendations, to try and identify the “sweet spots” that will impact positively on the sector and are easy to do.

Carl Allen
29 Sep 2012

So is the content of letter private or public?

John Marshall
CEO
Centrepoint Outreach
28 Sep 2012

Our Trustees are valued volunteers - as are all my other volunteer staff who give their time and skills without payment. No matter how you dress it up, if you pay them - you employ them! Such a move would rightly upset real non paid volunteers who would see that some are valued more than others!
Of course - it would only be the rich charities who could afford to pay their Trustees - until donors realised their money was being misused. Financial reward to those who volunteer - is not what donors and supporters want or expect. It devalues the meaning of giving to 'charity'.
Trustees should not be paid. Their efforts are surely part of their personal charitable giving. I would seriously question their motivation - if they are doing it for personal reward!

Sir Robin Bogg
CEO
BUBB
25 Sep 2012

A "substantial minority" is still a minority, however you dress it up. If a quarter of those asked (however the question was conveniently couched and however representative of the whole sector the 218 were) could envisage paying trustees that still means three quarters can't. Which I would say is a "substantial majority". Not that Acevo is tweaking the presentation of stats to fit their long established support for paid trustees or anything.

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