ACNCAdministrationAnnual Information StatementATOExternal Conduct StandardsFinanceStipend

End Of Financial Year Is Coming

It’s going to be a big new financial year this year, so we are publishing this article to help you plan ahead!  In just a few days the calendar year will be half over and the financial year will be complete, which brings with it all sorts of significant moments, even if you run your church finances on a calendar year basis.  Let’s give you a bit of a snapshot of things to think about…

1. Review Remuneration Rates
Generally, Pastor Stipends are updated as of 1 January each year. However, a recent review of the National Minimum Wage by the Fair Work Commission has increase this above what a Pastor on the Non-Accredited Level 1 would be receiving. Therefore, we have increased this particular Stipend Level to match the National Minimum Wage. Please go to our website to review updated Stipend List.

2. Income Statements for All Employees
Income Statements will be due for all staff you have employed during the financial year, so they can do their tax returns.  All employers, including churches, need to provide their staff with income statements at the end of the financial year.  These are no longer distributed in paper form but are distributed into people’s MyGov accounts.  The most common bookkeeping applications, Xero and MYOB, can help!

3. If your financial year ends on 30th June, its close-off time!
For those churches who have a financial year end on 30th June, it is time to start closing off the books and producing end of the year financial reports.

4. If your financial year ends on 31st December, report to ACNC!
For those churches who have a financial year end on 31st December, 30th June is the traditional final day for completing your Annual Information Statement to the Australian Charities and Not-for-profit Commission (ACNC).

5. Super Changes
Superannuation is going up as of 30th June this year.  The increase is a further 0.5% of income from 9.5% to 10%.  This is the first of five increases proposed for the next five years until the rate hits 12%.  The remuneration guidelines set out some further details about how this applies for ministers, notably because of Exempt Fringe Benefits.  Again, if you are on Xero, the good news is that these changes will be implemented more or less automatically, but unfortunately it will be an additional expense the church will need to find.

6. Review your External Conduct Standards Compliance
Almost forgotten over the COVID period has been the External Conduct Standards (ECS) administered by ACNC.  The ECS apply to any church sending support overseas directly to encourage ministries in other parts of the world.  We do not have a lot of information from ACNC about how this administration is going, but we are expecting they will start doing some random audits of charities to assess how their compliance is going.  Inevitably, churches such as ours are significantly over-represented in terms of whether the ECS are applicable, so it is somewhat likely that some churches around the country will be nominated for review.  We have published full guidelines on this, plus some template forms to use for tracking your compliance.

7. Church Contributions to Baptist Churches of SA for  financial year 2020/21
Just a reminder , that all contributions for the financial year 2020/21 have to be received no later than 30 June 2021.
We are aware that in these unique times many of us are facing uncertainty about our finances.
For churches that may not be in a position to meet the full 2.5%, any contribution that you can make toward the costs and ministries of Baptist Churches of SA would be extremely helpful.

8. A Thing Not to Do Yet: ACNC Reporting for 2021/22
If 30th June is your end of financial year – you will need to do your Annual Information Statement for ACNC in the next six months.  But don’t get concerned about doing it yet.  For a start, the form has not yet been released, but also they really DO want you to confirm your financials before you report.  So – on this one, just hold off for now.

Spare a thought for your Treasurer who will be busy with all this, and quite possibly your Administrator / Secretary as well.  Thank you to them for all their efforts!