Fake charity unhappy RevCan discovered they are a fake charity


Locutus
+1
#1
let's call it "activism laundering"

https://twitter.com/NeilJEdmondson/s...64061688418304

Revenue Canada targets birdwatchers for political activity


Canada Revenue Agency issues warning letter to wildlife club to curb any political activities



A small group of nature lovers in southern Ontario enjoy spending weekends watching birds and other wildlife, but lately they're the ones under watch — by the Canada Revenue Agency.

The Kitchener-Waterloo Field Naturalists, a registered charity, is apparently at risk of breaking tax agency rules that limit so-called political or partisan activities.

Earlier this year, tax auditors sent a letter to the 300-member group, warning about political material on the group's website.

The stern missive says the group must take appropriate action as necessary "including refraining from undertaking any partisan activities," with the ominous warning that "this letter does not preclude any future audits."

A copy of the five-page March 11 letter, signed by Valerie Spiegelman of the charities directorate, was obtained by CBC News.

Officials in the naturalist group are declining comment about the cannon shot across the bow, apparently for fear of attracting more attention from the tax agency.


Member speaks out

But longtime member Roger Suffling is speaking up, saying the issue is about democratic freedom and not about arcane tax rules.
'Effectively, they've put a gag on us.' — Roger Suffling, member of Kitchener-Waterloo Field Naturalists



more boo-hooing and such

CBC News - Revenue Canada targets birdwatchers for political activity
 
Sal
No Party Affiliation
#2
Effectively, they've put a gag on us," he said in an interview, noting that the letter arrived just after the club had written directly to two federal cabinet ministers to complain about government-approved chemicals that damage bee colonies.

now that is not what I thought they meant by partisan behaviour
 
damngrumpy
No Party Affiliation
#3
Even as group that is a charity if they see something that is a hazard to wildlife
or ecosystem they should have a right to bring it forward. Partisan politics is
another matter.. I wonder if this is a case of not knowing the difference between
the two. There is a difference between stating the government is not doing to
protect wildlife and saying this government advocates the policy of allowing
wildlife to be destroyed. It depends on how personal one gets in their focus on
the problem
I also believe the government of the day is out to stifle non profits from commenting
on the changes government has made to reduce standards of everything from
wildlife to the poor in the eyes of many. It may take an election to sort this out
 
Sal
No Party Affiliation
#4
Quote: Originally Posted by damngrumpy View Post

Even as group that is a charity if they see something that is a hazard to wildlife
or ecosystem they should have a right to bring it forward. Partisan politics is
another matter.. I wonder if this is a case of not knowing the difference between
the two. There is a difference between stating the government is not doing to
protect wildlife and saying this government advocates the policy of allowing
wildlife to be destroyed. It depends on how personal one gets in their focus on
the problem
I also believe the government of the day is out to stifle non profits from commenting
on the changes government has made to reduce standards of everything from
wildlife to the poor in the eyes of many. It may take an election to sort this out

absolutely....fully agree...they should have the right to comment on bees and sprays etc...I don't understand actually why that was targetted

or audited or whatever
 
CDNBear
+1
#5
The rules say a charity can devote no more than 10 per cent of its resources to political activities, and none to partisan activities...

The rules are clear, stay within them and the authorities don't get fussy.
 
SLM
No Party Affiliation
+1
#6
CRA is very, very strict with Charities. And it's all because charities have the right to issue tax receipts. There is a very strict letter of the law and charities have to follow it, verbatim. I've heard of many charities losing their status because they didn't adhere strictly to the code of conduct for charities, and none of those would be regarded as hugely misappropriate actions by "normal societal standards" either.
 
mentalfloss
#7
Revenue Canada's political activity audits biased, think-tank says

The Broadbent Institute is calling for an independent probe of the Canada Revenue Agency, saying tax auditors are targeting critics of the Harper government while letting right-leaning groups off the hook.

The self-style "progressive" think-tank released a research report Tuesday citing recent public statements by 10 "right-leaning" or "conservative" charitable groups that it says are political, yet the groups reported no political activities in their mandatory annual statements to the tax agency.

Harper rejects charges of bias in CRA's scrutiny of birdwatchers
Revenue Canada targets birdwatchers for political activity audit
Canada Revenue Agency's targeting of charities under scrutiny
The report says many charities that have opposed government policies have been hit with political-activity audits while other groups, such as the C.D. Howe Institute and the Macdonald-Laurier Institute, have escaped such scrutiny despite their apparently political statements in the past.

"The findings in this report serve to deepen suspicions of the Harper government's continued and deliberate silencing of critical voices," says the document.

"The mounting evidence of a politicized CRA merits the establishment of an independent inquiry into its processes to ensure transparency and fairness."

At issue are a series of 52 political activity audits first launched in 2012 under a new $8-million, two-year program announced in the federal budget that year, a program later topped up to $13.4 million and made permanent.

Net cast more widely

Auditors first targeted a group of environment charities which have been critical of energy and pipeline policies and who were vilified by several cabinet ministers at the time as radicals and money launderers. The net has been cast more widely since, selecting charities that promote social justice, poverty and religion.


Revenue Minister Kerry-Lynne Findlay has repeatedly rejected any suggestion that she directs which charities the Canada Revenue Agency will audit for political activities. (Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press)
Charities are permitted to devote up to 10 per cent of their resources to political activities, but critics say the definitions in the regulations can be complicated and unclear. Partisan activities are forbidden entirely, such as endorsing a candidate for public office.

The Canada Revenue Agency and National Revenue Minister Kerry-Lynne Findlay have each dismissed repeated allegations that the government directs which charities to audit, saying the choice is made by competent public servants based on objective evidence, drawing on material posted on websites and other sources.

The agency will not release a list of targeted charities, but most of the groups who confirm they are being audited for political activities have made public statements in the past taking issue with Harper government policies. Two charities, the C.D. Howe Institute and the Macdonald-Laurier Institute, have confirmed they are not being audited, but others such as the Fraser Institute have declined to comment.

Cites 10 groups

The Broadbent Institute report examines the public statements of 10 groups and claims to have found many that are overtly political, yet none of the groups reported any political activity to the CRA.

"The evidence presented here is not intended to question whether these charities should or shouldn't be engaged in political activity," says the report.

"Rather, it is meant to raise questions about how the CRA's definition of political activity is being interpreted and the transparency of the CRA's process for determining which groups to audit."

'Whether CRA is being even-handed or not, or is being used as a tool of harassment by the federal government directed at critical charities is an important question for the health of Canadian democracy.'- Rick Smith, executive-director of the Broadbent Institute
The report cites a 2013 statement by the Atlantic Institute for Market Studies, for example, that calls on the federal government to "wind down Canadian content requirements and foreign ownership restrictions in the communications sector." The institute has not responded to questions about whether it is being audited for political activities.

"There's clearly wildly varying interpretations of what CRA means by political activity," Rick Smith, executive director of the Broadbent Institute, said in an interview from Toronto.

"Whether CRA is being even-handed or not, or is being used as a tool of harassment by the federal government directed at critical charities, is an important question for the health of Canadian democracy."

The institute's call for an independent inquiry repeats an earlier call by New Democrat MP Murray Rankin, the party's revenue critic, who has said a retired judge or other credible person with no link to government should be called in to review the program.

No charity has so far been stripped of its charitable registration under the new political-activity audit program, though the CRA has imposed some onerous conditions on some groups. Targeted charities say the audits drain them of scarce cash and resources, such as staff time, and critics say the audits have led to "advocacy chill" as some groups fear speaking out.

The Broadbent Institute reports follows a CBC News report that the CRA has been scrutinizing a small birdwatching group in Kitchener, Ont., for its alleged political activities.

The group, with revenues of just $16,000 a year, was sent a five-page "reminder letter" earlier this year after agency auditors determined some comments on their webpage to be political, and warned they were not ruling out an audit.

Follow @DeanBeeby on Twitter


Share this story


http://www.cbc.ca/m/news/politics/re...says-1.2806217
 
Kreskin
+2
#8
It's easy to groundlessly speculate about the intentions of the CRA. The allegations are rhetoric.

By nature registered charities are approved for specific and distinct social causes/purposes. To receive preferential tax they should not only expect to be audited but welcome it. Audits are hardly unfair burdens. If they don't like them they can operate as non-registered charities and thus be free to fundraise for whatever purposes.
 
DaSleeper
#9
Isn't there already a thread on this????
 
petros
#10
Waaaaaay too f-king funny. I damn near spat coffee.
 
Cannuck
No Party Affiliation
+1
#11
"Revenue Minister Kerry-Lynne Findlay has repeatedly rejected any suggestion that she directs which charities the Canada Revenue Agency will audit for political activities. (Adrian Wyld/The Canadian Press)"

And the political masters don't tell the police chief to enact STEP programs either but let the police dept be a few million short on budget revenues....

The issue here is not whether charities should or shouldn't be audited. I doubt there are too many people that don't think they should be. At issue is the criteria used to decide who gets audited. I would like to see a list of which charities have been audited. If the overwhelming majority are unfriendly to Harper then one would expect that something is afoul. Unfortunately, the OP is largely about the opinion of Broadbent so you'll have to excuse me if I don't take it too seriously just yet
 
petros
+1
#12
Why did CRA audit the Elks this spring? Bias?
 
Kreskin
+3
#13  Top Rated Post
Created for social causes what would be the ratio of "left leaning" vs "right leaning" registered charities? If 80% are by nature left leaning then wouldn't 4 out of 5 audits be done on groups that don't appear faithful to Stephen Harper? Or is that just a Trident-dental ratio?
 
Cannuck
No Party Affiliation
#14
Quote: Originally Posted by petros View Post

Why did CRA audit the Elks this spring? Bias?

I don't think anybody is saying that EVERY audit is political. Thanks for your entertaining as usual input.
 
petros
+1
#15
Why do dentists recommend a gum named "three teeth"?
 
IdRatherBeSkiing
#16
Quote: Originally Posted by mentalfloss View Post

"The findings in this report serve to deepen suspicions of the Harper government's continued and deliberate silencing of critical voices," says the document.

LOL The whole idea of charitable status & politics is that they should be silent. The only issue is whether other groups are NOT being silenced.
 
Cannuck
No Party Affiliation
+1
#17
Quote: Originally Posted by IdRatherBeSkiing View Post

LOL The whole idea of charitable status & politics is that they should be silent. The only issue is whether other groups are NOT being silenced.

But it may not be the charities that are making climate change, homelessness, or animal welfare a political issue. Not every charity is the David Suzuki Foundation.
 
taxslave
Free Thinker
#18
Quote: Originally Posted by DaSleeper View Post

Isn't there already a thread on this????

There was. I think the same C&P OP as well.
 
mentalfloss
#19
I normally wouldn't take this at face value but because of the nature of the criticism I would say it is credible.

If a right wing think tank thought there was an unfair focus on right wing groups, I would also agree that there is a valid cause for concern.
 
IdRatherBeSkiing
#20
Quote: Originally Posted by Cannuck View Post

But it may not be the charities that are making climate change, homelessness, or animal welfare a political issue. Not every charity is the David Suzuki Foundation.


I would think the minute they critisize the government for doing too much/too little, they have made it political. I doubt somebody just helping animals or the homeless alone would have too much to worry about from RC.
 
petros
#21
All charities get audited regularly. Nobody is being singled out.
 
taxslave
Free Thinker
#22
There is a real fine line in the way the law is written between what is charity and what is advocacy. If the majority of the money is coming from large US based foundations it is a safe bet it isn't rally a charity.
 
Locutus
#23
Quote: Originally Posted by DaSleeper View Post

Isn't there already a thread on this????

*merged*
 
Cannuck
No Party Affiliation
#24
Quote: Originally Posted by IdRatherBeSkiing View Post

I would think the minute they critisize the government for doing too much/too little, they have made it political. I doubt somebody just helping animals or the homeless alone would have too much to worry about from RC.

So if the government does something that has a direct and measurable impact on homelessness, you feel charities that deal with homelessness should be mum on the issue? Interesting.

Quote: Originally Posted by petros View Post

All charities get audited regularly. Nobody is being singled out.

Our local fire association (which is a registered charity) has never been audited. You are wrong.
 
IdRatherBeSkiing
+1
#25
Quote: Originally Posted by Cannuck View Post

So if the government does something that has a direct and measurable impact on homelessness, you feel charities that deal with homelessness should be mum on the issue? Interesting.

The rules on what they can do with that status are pretty clear. They can always not declare themselves a charity and then they are free to say what they want.
 
Locutus
+1
#26
Quote: Originally Posted by Cannuck View Post

Our local fire association (which is a registered charity) has never been audited.

yet

Quote: Originally Posted by IdRatherBeSkiing View Post

The rules on what they can do with that status are pretty clear. They can always not declare themselves a charity and then they are free to say what they want.

many others have noted the same thing...pretty easy to understand...be a charity or not be one but don't cry to mommy if you muck about and get caught while masquerading as one with ulterior motives.
 
Cannuck
No Party Affiliation
+2
#27
Quote: Originally Posted by Locutus View Post

yet

Yup. It was incorporated in 1978 (I believe) so it's closing in on 40 years. It's probably due. Everything is above board so we welcome it. Maybe we should hang a picture of Justin on the front of the building so we can get it over with sooner rather than later.

On a related note, I think people tend to confuse government, politics and bureaucracy. They are not synonymous.
 
petros
#28
Quote: Originally Posted by Cannuck View Post

So if the government does something that has a direct and measurable impact on homelessness, you feel charities that deal with homelessness should be mum on the issue? Interesting.



Our local fire association (which is a registered charity) has never been audited. You are wrong.

Quit f-cking lying. Cocksucker.
 
Cannuck
No Party Affiliation
#29
Quote: Originally Posted by petros View Post

Quit f-cking lying. Cocksucker.

Oh dear.....you must be mad at me again.
 
Tecumsehsbones
+1
#30
Quote: Originally Posted by petros View Post

Quit f-cking lying. Cocksucker.

Is that any way to talk about someone who gives your penny whistle a toot?
 

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