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Monthly Archives: February 2012

New digs!

We hope you like our new website. We’re not finished – you’ll see changes over the next few weeks.

If you are looking for any of our old blog posts, we have yet to migrate them but we’ll take care of that this week.

By |February 12th, 2012|Fundtracker News|0 Comments|

Fighting the good fight against inaccurate, out-of-date info

Our research team just finished one of our regular updates – this time it’s of all of Ontario government grants.. That’s 106 out of the 406 provincial grants and 242 federal grants we are currently following.

Go research team, go!

The reason we put so much effort into keeping our information up-to-date and accurate is because there is so much confusion in the sector about all funding sources, including government. Check out this recently released report of the BC Gaming Grants:

Appendix C: Common Misconceptions

Upon completing the listening and reading phase of my review, I met with the Executive Director of the Gaming Grants Branch (the people who administer the grants) to discuss concerns and ideas. Fortunately, several concerns are misconceptions about how the program is administered.

Due, in part, to the volunteer nature of leadership in community groups, and its associated human-resource turn over, many perceived constraints and requirements are hearsay and do not actually exist. (emphasis added)

Many of these misconceptions could be overcome with a clear statement on the program’s web page and written documents to the effect that the Gaming Grants Branch is willing to consider any request for an explanation of, or an exception to, its operational regulations and practices.

A list of common misconceptions follows:

Funding rules are too rigid and do not facilitate innovations, such as giving grocery store gift certificates (instead of cash) to needy people.

The Gaming Grants Branch will consider any expenditure connected with the pursuit of an approved project. Branch staff will question unusual expenditures, as they should, but will approve them when appropriate. The expenditure in the misconception cited above was questioned and subsequently approved.

Successful fundraising will be penalized by grant reductions.

Only proceeds from licensed gaming in excess of $250,000 received in the last 12 months have an impact on grants. Other fundraising has no effect.

Capital funding, maintenance funding, operations funding, contingency funding, and partnerships with other government funders are not eligible uses of grant funds.

Capital expenditures in excess of $20,000 are not eligible at this time. The other expenditures are eligible, although sometimes with reasonable restrictions. For example, contingency funds may not exceed six months’ operating costs.

The Gaming Grants Branch will summarily reject any application that contains a technical error.

The Branch makes every effort to contact applicants to resolve problems. However, they are sometimes unable to do so because organizations’ contact people, or their contact coordinates, change without notifying the Branch.

The Gaming Grants Branch is rigid in its requirement that grant funds be spent within 12 months of receipt.

The Branch will consider any reasonable request for an extension and frequently makes exceptions and grants extensions.

The Gaming Grants Branch requires financial statements that have been audited by a professional accountant. This is expensive and a poor use of a grant-recipient’s funds.

The Branch neither requires nor prefers audited financial statements. The Branch encourages simplified financial statements and reports signed by an officer of the recipient organization.

These are the kinds of misconceptions that we make our business to stamp out. It is nice to see them addressed in this report. And if you’re interested in following funding reform in BC, make sure to friend/follow/sign up for info from the Government- Non-profit Initiative.