Incorporating is Good for You.
- Subject: [cg] Incorporating is Good for You.
- From: Adam36055@aol.com
- Date: Mon, 10 Jan 2005 22:30:17 EST
One of the ways of insuring accountability in both the governance and
financial dealings of any non-for-profit public greening association is to make it
adhere to the guidelines that 501(c)(3) corporate status requires.
Knowing that Uncle Sam or another governmental auditor may swoop down on you
if you co-mingle personal and charitably donate funds, don't have monthly
meetings with minutes ( following Robert's Rules of Order) ,publicly available
by-laws, minutes, etc., keeps honest people honest and the public trust of a
volunteer run land trust/garden/food bank trustworthy.
And it requires your community garden to take it's self-governance and
self-empowerment seriously. You don't go to Mommy or Daddy to clear your charitable
donations in-kind or in-cash for you - you are Mommy and Daddy.
The Clinton Community Garden has been a 501(c)(3) since the mid-eighties and
is doing quite well at it, despite the difficulties that running a completely
volunteer board entails. Again, please feel free to go to our website for our
rules, regulations and corporate by-laws.
The discipline of running an "up-and-up" not-for-profit entity makes alot of
the other governance issues routine and democratic. I think all gardens and
gardeners should be schooled in self-governance and democracy, and being held
accountable to be transparent in ones dealings is a great school for this.
> Subj: Re: [cg] to incorporate or not to incorporate
> Date: 1/10/05 2:51:55 PM Mid-Atlantic Standard Time
> From: firstname.lastname@example.org
> To: email@example.com
> CC: firstname.lastname@example.org
> Sent from the Internet
> I'm all for not incorporating.
> Our garden has been in existence since 1976 and have not found a good
> reason to go through either the incorporation hassle or the associated
> reporting requirements once incorporation is accomplished. Since we are
> a community garden, and our leadership changes every two to four years,
> there's no way of knowing that the responsible people will have the
> skills or knowledge to fill out 990's etc.
> When we do a major fund-raising from folk who will only give to a
> 501-c-3, we use one or two local non-profits to act as bursar which
> they seem quite willing to do for us. The check is written to the
> non-profit, and it, in turn, cuts us a check. It's really easy.
> The American Community Gardening Association listserve is only one of ACGA's
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