Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Nonprofit panel recommends greater accountability for nonprofits

The Financial Executives Institute has made available an extensive report by the Panel on the Nonprofit Sector urging greater transparency and accountability by nonprofits while applauding their contributions to American society. The Principles to Guide Improvement of Accountability (pp. 22-24) were particularly impressive. The recommendations were numerous; FEI provides a summary.

This is a particularly important part of American society. In many cases, the nonprofit sector is both more efficient and more compassionate (or at least more visibly involved) than the government sector in dealing with human needs and societal problems. Alas, in our imperfect world, nonprofits cannot stretch resources far enough to meet all needs; thus (reluctantly) I must acknowledge some need for government involvement in social needs. The Panel is correct that abuses of tax law and donor monies also taints by a minority of nonprofits (if to some degree unfairly) many other nonprofits, thus it IS important that those in charge of nonprofits take their fiduciary responsibilities to heart.


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