The Government has released a discussion paper on potential reforms to the deductible gift recipient (DGR) tax arrangements.

15 June 2017

The discussion paper outlines a number of proposals to strengthen the DGR governance arrangements and make the process of applying for DGR status less complex.

DGR status helps arts and cultural organisations to fund their activities by allowing them to receive gifts and contributions for which donors are able to claim a tax deduction.

More than 1600 cultural organisations are currently endorsed as DGRs through being listed on the Register of Cultural Organisations (ROCO), which is managed by the Department of Communications and the Arts. One of the proposals in the discussion paper is that the ROCO (and the other three DGR registers run by departments of state) could be transferred to the Australian Tax Office (ATO) in order to reduce red tape and application processing time. 

This would mean that cultural organisations seeking DGR status through the ROCO would first register as a charity with the Australian Charities and Not-for-profits Commission, after which DGR endorsement would be managed by the ATO. This process would be similar to that already in place for the general DGR categories for public collecting institutions, under which more than 2500 public libraries, museums and galleries currently have DGR status.

Submissions are due by 4 August 2017. To view the discussion paper and have your say visit the Treasury’s website.