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EisnerAmper Blog

Not-for-Profit Trends and Tips Blog

EisnerAmper Partners to Speak at Not-for-Profit Fundraising Educational Event in New York

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February 26, 2015

Lewis_KristenBy Kristen Lewis

Partners Julie Floch and Candice Meth will be presenting a program for The Education and Research Foundation of the Better Business Bureau of Metropolitan New York on March 18th. “Fundraising: the Inside Story” will be held from 9:00 – 11:30 a.m. at the Scandinavia House in Manhattan.  The speakers will discuss how financial statements and reports are an important part of your organization’s fundraising picture as they tell a story about your mission, accomplishments and stability. Attendees will find out about how to track and report fundraising expenses appropriately, how to make cost allocations, what cost issues can arise related to special events and campaigns, how to best address compliance issues, and what steps can be taken to avoid UBIT complications, among other topics. Participants will also have the chance to discuss a host of other concerns during an interactive Q&A session. The program is designed for not-for-profit executives, CFOs, COOs, development officers, program officers, board members, philanthropy leaders and not-for-profit advisors. For more information on the event, and to register, please visit The Education and Research Foundation of the Better Business Bureau of Metropolitan New York Website.

FBI Issues a Public Service Announcement Regarding Business E-mail Compromise

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February 16, 2015
Collins_BrianBy Brian Collins, CPA


On January 22, 2015, the FBI’s Internet Crime Complaint Center issued a public service announcement regarding an email scam dubbed the Business Email Compromise (“BEC”). The announcement stated, in part, “BEC is a sophisticated scam targeting businesses working with foreign suppliers and/or businesses that regularly perform wire transfer payments.”  The FBI has received BEC complaint data from victims in every U.S. state and 45 countries, ranging from small to large businesses.  From October 1, 2013 to December 1, 2014, there have been:

  • Total U.S. victims: 1198
  • Total U.S. dollar loss: $179,755,367
  • Total non-U.S. victims: 928
  • Total non-U.S. dollar loss: $35,217,136
  • Combined victims: 2126
  • Combined dollar loss: $214,972,503

In addition, “The FBI assesses with high confidence the number of victims and the total dollar loss will continue to increase.”

One version of the scam occurs when “a business, which often has a long standing relationship with a supplier, is asked to wire funds for invoice payment to an alternate, fraudulent account. The request may be made via telephone, facsimile or e-mail. If an e-mail is received, the subject will spoof the e-mail request so it appears very similar to a legitimate account and would take very close scrutiny to determine it was fraudulent. Likewise, if a facsimile or telephone call is received, it will closely mimic a legitimate request.”

Click here for the complete FBI’s public service announcement.  The announcement provides characteristics of BEC complaints and suggestions for protecting your organization.

PA Auditor General Issues Special Report Regarding Potential Lost Revenue from Tax Exempt Properties

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January 21, 2015 

Collins_BrianBy Brian Collins, CPA


In December, Pennsylvania’s Auditor General Eugene DePasquale released a special report on property tax exemptions that might be costing local municipalities, counties and school districts billions of dollars a year.  The Pennsylvania Department of the Auditor General wrote the report in an effort to provide taxpayers with data on the potential tax revenue from the properties that are currently exempt from property taxes.

The special report found that more than $1.5 billion in property tax revenue is potentially lost in the 10-county sample examined for the report.  The report reflects potential property tax liability in the county, municipality and school district where each property is located.

The special report also provides a background regarding the ongoing tug-of-war between the Pennsylvania General Assembly and the Pennsylvania Supreme Court to define a “purely public charity.”  When an organization is defined as a purely public charity they are exempt from property taxes at all levels, including at the county, municipal, and school district levels.  Currently, as defined by the Pennsylvania Supreme Court, organization must meet all five factors of the “HUP Test” (see Note 1) in order to be considered a purely public charity.  However, the Pennsylvania General Assembly at this time is attempting to pass a constitutional amendment to give the Pennsylvania legislature the sole authority to define a purely public charity.

The Auditor General report concludes that, although the debate over how purely public charity is defined is ongoing, taxpayers, local government, school districts, and charitable institutions themselves should all have a say in the debate on how a purely public charity is defined.

Click here for the PA Auditor General’s “Review of Potential Lost Revenue Due to Property Tax Exemptions” report.

Note 1 - The five factors of the HUP Test are the following:

  1. advances a charitable purpose
  2. donates or renders gratuitously a substantial portion of its services
  3.  benefits a substantial and indefinite class of persons who are legitimate subjects of charity
  4. relieves the government of some of its burden
  5. operates entirely free from private profit motive.

New Legislation Amending PA Form BCO-10 Due Date

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November 25, 2014

By Brian Collins, CPA


Collins_BrianOn October 14, 2014, Governor Corbett signed House Bill No. 359 into law, changing the due dates for certain fundraising registrations required under Pennsylvania law.  The new legislation will go into effect on December 13, 2014 and effects not-for-profit organizations that are required to submit the Charitable Organization Registration Statement – Form BCO-10.  The legislation makes the due dates for filing annual registration statements, such as Form BCO-10, with the Pennsylvania Bureau of Corporations and Charitable Organizations consistent with the due dates for filing Form 990 Returns with the IRS. 

Social Media Policy for Not-for-Profit Organizations

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November 12, 2014

Social media can be a powerful tool for not-for-profits in ‘sharing their message,’ whether they’re trying to build brand awareness, raise funds, or increase engagement. However, as the saying goes, with great power comes great responsibility. Having an effective social media policy can go a long way toward achieving goals and protecting an organization from legal or reputational risks. Amy MacFadyen and Stefanie Franovic, two professionals from EisnerAmper’s Not-for-Profit Services Practice, have written a series of articles developed to help not-for-profits effectively harness the power of social media. Find out about creating your social media policy, and don’t forget to check back for more in the coming weeks.

Nonprofit Organizations Event Broadcast November 5th

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October 31, 2014

By Kristen Lewis

EisnerAmper Partner Julie Floch is one of the co-chairs for a Practising Law Institute event entitled Nonprofit Organizations 2014: Governance, Form 990 Reporting, and Compensation Issues. The program will provide insights on the developments impacting nonprofit organizations today. The session will be hosted live as well as broadcast via webcast on November 5, 2014 from 9:00 am – 12:15 pm ET. Attendees can earn CLE, CPE and CPD credit. To learn more and register, please visit the event website.

Measuring the Impact of Your Social Media Campaigns

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October 28, 2015

 

By Amy MacFadyen, CPA and Stefanie Franovic

Franovic, StefanieMacFadyen_AmyNot-for-profits face significant challenges in building brand awareness, raising funds, and increasing engagement—and social media can have a significant impact in helping to achieve these goals. But, like any other business process, social media takes commitment, planning, and the correct tools, as well as the ability to measure the impact of a campaign.

Two of our professionals, Amy MacFadyen and Stefanie Franovic, have written a series of articles developed to help not-for-profits effectively harness the power of social media. Read the first post here and check back over the next few weeks for more.

EisnerAmper is an independent member of PKF North America.
PKF North America is an independent member of PKF International.