Summary snapshot of changes proposed to be introduced to the requirements for a school or college building fund to be endorsed as a DGR.
The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has released a proposal which changes the circumstances within which a School or College
Building Fund may be established and maintained to enable an effective tax deduction to be given to donors to the fund.
Draft Taxation Ruling TR2011/D5 addresses important questions about when buildings can be used for purposes other than the purposes of the School or College and still enable the School or College Building Fund to give a valid tax deduction. It also explains the position in relation to buildings commissioned under the Building Education Revolution (BER) and the BER’s requirement that certain buildings built within the BER be made available for community use.
The draft ruling clarifies whether the community use of school libraries and school multi-purpose halls under the BER is to be considered likely to interfere with the conduct of the School, in which case it would cause the College or School Building Fund to be disqualified from Deductible Gift Recipient (DGR) status by the ATO.
The draft ruling changes the test that is currently applicable regarding the issue of when buildings can be used for other purposes to allow the fund to remain a DGR.
Schools and Colleges constantly balancing school and community needs should consider drafting Submissions before 2 March 2012, after which the ATO will no longer receive them.