CPA Institute head: State harms nonprofits' ability to raise funds for those in need

There are 1,600 large non-profit organizations in Israel and 8,250 small non-profit organizations

 Chen Schreiber (photo credit: REUVEN KOPITCHINSKI/MAARIV)
Chen Schreiber
(photo credit: REUVEN KOPITCHINSKI/MAARIV)

The president of the Institute of Certified Public Accountants (CPA), Chen Schreiber, on Sunday sharply criticized the state's treatment of associations and nonprofit organizations, and claimed that "the state harms their ability to raise funds and help underprivileged populations in Israel.”

The remarks were made at a conference concerning non-profits led by the Institute with the participation of the Director-General of the Justice Minister Eran Davidi, and the head of the Corporations Authority, Shuli Avnei Shoham. 

There are 1,600 large non-profit organizations in Israel with a cash flow of NIS 7.5 million per non-profit organization, and 8,250 small non-profit organizations with a cash flow of up to NIS 400,000 per non-profit organization.

Schreiber noted that "the accumulation of difficulties and unnecessary bureaucracy is particularly detrimental to the ability of organizations to raise donations from abroad. 

"A special committee should be set up under the Institute of Certified Public Accountants to connect the associations with donors and the business sector," he said. "This is the only way to remove barriers and allow these organizations to help the country's citizens.”

Finance Minister Avigdor Liberman at the conference for the Institute of Certified Public Accountants. (credit: NIV KANTOR)Finance Minister Avigdor Liberman at the conference for the Institute of Certified Public Accountants. (credit: NIV KANTOR)

He added that companies should invest in technological ventures that are not for profit, but for the benefit of the needy. In Silicon Valley, there are accelerators and incubators that invest in technology that is beneficial yet not for profit.

Vice President Daphna Barzilai, who’s the liaison between associations and the CPA recommended that "the competition authority set up accelerators and work to ensure that some of the greenhouses' budgets are directed to public purposes.” 

She added that philanthropy is interested in this but the donors feel that the state should also put a hand in the pocket and ease the tax burden of large donors.

The Director-General of the Justice Ministry and Chairman of the Board of Accountants, Eran Davidi, said that the firm is attentive to the voices of people from the nonprofit world: "We began by examining the challenges and opportunities facing practitioners in this field.” 

Davidi added that an accountant's work isn’t technical. This is a very essential job in any organization in which it is located. 

Accountants not only work for the benefit of the organization and its growth. They’re one of the only factors on which the state relies on for financial knowledge. This safeguards the entire public interest.

Davidi also noted that “the Corporate Conference combines two significant areas that we’re working to promote in the Justice Ministry. The first is the practice of accounting, which I touched on, and the second is the promotion of third sector activity in Israel."