Ethical Fundraising Practices

Recently, I overheard two individuals discussing ethical fundraising practices for their small nonprofit organization over lunch. As an auditor specializing in non-profit, you can imagine how quickly this caught my attention. I was grateful for the noise of the restaurant and the influx of customers as I scooted my chair a little bit closer to …

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Defining Independence

Prior to becoming a CPA, when I heard “independence” I would think of Toby Keith songs, fireworks, and the American flag. Now that I’m an auditor, independence is not only a celebration on July 4th but also an assessment we must make on every attest engagement we perform. The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) accurately …

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Donated Services

Volunteer time (or donated services) is only recorded as revenue and expense in the financial statements if the services create or add value to a non-financial asset (such as construction services provided to a building) or if the services meet all of the following three criteria: The services require specialized skills The services are provided …

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Let’s Get Political

Whether you’re affiliated with a party or vote as an independent, you’ve probably considered “unfriending” or “unfollowing” some of your more politically opinionated friends on social media due to the relentless long-winded paragraphs and meme posts about Trump’s hair or Sander’s age. I’ve come to the conclusion that I can either get off social media …

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Arizona Gives Day

It’s that time of year again, and this might be the first time your accountant is not referring to tax season. We are talking about Arizona Gives Day, the annual one-day online giving campaign to Arizona not-for-profits hosted by the Alliance of Arizona Nonprofits and Arizona Grantmakers. Since 2013, this program has raised over $4,556,359. …

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Q&A: Advertising

What is advertising? As defined, advertising is the promotion of an industry, entity, brand name, product or service through the use of media. Its purpose is to create a positive image for the company and to encourage individuals to use the company’s products or services. Advertising, however, is not fundraising. When do I report the …

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ACFE – Report to the Nations on Occupational Fraud and Abuse

The Association of Certified Fraud Examiners recently released their annual “Report to the Nations on Occupational Fraud and Abuse”. The report provides statistical information on fraud in the workplace during 2014. Here are a few of their findings: Participants estimated that the typical organization loses 5% of revenues each year to fraud. The median loss …

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Do Nonprofit Organizations Have to Pay Sales Tax in Arizona?

We often receive questions from clients asking whether Arizona offers an exemption from sales tax (transaction privilege tax) for non-profit organizations. Unfortunately, Arizona does not offer a blanket exemption like many other states. However, there is an exemption on sales tax for retail items sold by non-profit organizations. It also includes the sale of food …

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Pump the Brakes! Did We Really Meet the Restriction of that Donation?

Dual restricted contributions remind me of driving a vehicle with a standard transmission. If you release the clutch but forget to put the car in gear, you probably won’t go anywhere unless your vehicle is on an incline or decline. Even then, you will most likely, eventually roll to a stop. On the other hand, …

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Potential Nonprofit Accounting Changes?

Approximately 13,340 nonprofits registered with the state Department of Consumer Protection may be impacted by FASB’s proposed changes to financial reporting. In April, they announced the proposal to change the following items: Income Statement Rule: Requires entities to report net income or loss from operating activities, separate from non-operating activities. Impact: Clearly shows income and …

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