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Financial Management

City Funding for Community Associations


Financial Requirements


All non-profit organizations, which include Community Associations, are required to meet municipal, provincial and federal financial requirements as well as organizational legal requirements (e.g. bylaws). It is the responsibility of your Community Association’s board of directors to ensure their Community Association can meet the requirements to retain your CA as an organization in ‘good standing’.

The following is a partial listing of some of the more common places to examine the requirements of the organization:

The organization’s bylaws, policy and procedure manuals, strategic/business plan(s), the provincial Societies Act, insurance policies, Income Tax Act, Municipal Government Act, Lease/ License of Occupation (LOC), grant applications, etc.

Bylaws will outline the financial reports required by the organization. The term of treasurer, signing authority and financial decision-making is also generally outlined in the bylaws. It is the responsibility of each board member to be familiar with the organizational requirements. 

The Federation of Calgary Communities also hosts a website with information that can assist your organization with understanding annual requirements. Visit the site at Home - Federation of Calgary Communities. Many of the requirements for the different agencies/government bodies are similar in nature. Your organization can determine your overall annual requirements and develop a plan to prepare your submissions.

The following outline all levels of government legal requirements of community associations:

Municipal financial requirements

Community Associations with a lease/LOC agreement with The City

An annual audited financial statement signed by two members of the Board is required for not-for-profit groups with a lease/(LOC) with the City of Calgary.

A certificate of insurance must be submitted annually to the Neighbourhood Partnership Coordinator who can also provide more information related to insurance requirements including the following:

  • Board of director’s liability
  • All risks liability insurance
  • All risks property insurance
  • Accident insurance
  • Employee/ volunteer dishonesty

Every five years a board approved business plan that includes a one year board approved annual capital/operational budget.

A lifecycle study must be completed every 5 years in accordance with the lease/LOC agreement with the City of Calgary.

Additional requirements must be met to apply for grant funds, develop on city-owned land etc. Contact the Neighbourhood Partnership Coordinator for more information on these specific requirements. 

Provincial financial requirements

The Alberta Government can also provide important information regarding requirements of the Societies Act. Visit the website Government of Alberta | Alberta.ca.

  • Annual Returns
  • Forming/dissolving an organization
  • Bylaws

Contact the Worker’s Compensation Board for information related to:

  • Insurance premiums
  • Exemptions

Alberta Gaming can provide specific information regarding your organization and grant/gaming funds. Visit their site Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis | AGLC to find out information or requirements for:

  • Grants
  • Casino’s
  • Pull tickets and raffles
  • Liquor licensing 

Federal financial requirements

Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) produces information bulletins for charities and other not-for-profit organization. These are available at their website: Canada Revenue Agency/Agence du revenu du Canada - Canada.ca as well as at all District Taxation Offices. The information they can provide relates to your organization and:

  • GST - Payroll Deductions
  • Status as a charity
  • Employment insurance
  • Tax receipts
  • Canada Pension Plan
  • Financial statements
  • Income tax
  • Not-for-profits

Not-for-profit organizations with charitable status can visit the following website for information on maintaining their charitable status: Basic guidelines - Canada.ca

Community Association Financial Management Leading Practices


Budget

The Community Association Board:

  • Reviews and approves a yearly budget that includes all programs and management costs, building and construction costs and all sources of money.
  • Builds a projected long-term budget that is longer than one year and is related to their strategic plan, goals and priorities.

Funding

The Community Association Board:

  • Has enough money from different sources to cover all costs, investments and needed savings.
  • Has money saved for unplanned opportunities or emergencies.
  • Has a written action plan that identifies how the organization will bring in money from different sources and how successful their efforts were.
  • Is aware of and tracks grants to apply for, including understanding the full scope of grant requirements and possible additional costs or processes needed for the project or program.
  • Has an approved decision-making process when choosing what grants to apply for and how the money will be used (specific projects, programs, etc.).
  • Applies for and tracks grants to support their strategic plan, goals and priorities.
  • Has assigned a knowledgeable staff, volunteer, or board member to complete grant reports and applications. 

Cash Flow

The Community Association Board:

  • Has had money in their bank accounts at year end for the last two consecutive years.
  • Compares actual operating revenue and expenses to the approved budget.
  • Has enough money to continue operating for at least 60 days.
  • Reviews all agreements and contracts annually.
  • Reconciles all money monthly.

Policies & Procedures

The Community Association Board approves, and reviews written financial policies and procedures for:

  • Money handling for volunteers and staff.
  • Spending limits for staff and volunteers.
  • Authorized cheque signers (more than two people who are not related that can sign cheques, update information with bank, do not allow pre-signed cheques).
  • Investment and savings accounts.
  • Coverage for Treasurer when absent.
  • Collecting of money owed to the organization.

Financial Statements

The organization’s board of directors:

  • Follows generally accepted accounting leading practices.
  • Uses a computer software program for bookkeeping and financial reporting.
  • Ensures the people doing the bookkeeping and financial reporting have the right skills and experience (e.g., Treasurer, Bookkeeper).
  • Reviews, monitors, and approves monthly financial reports.
  • Ensures the monthly financial reporting is clear, transparent and easily understood by all.
  • Uses the monthly financial reports and budget comparisons to make necessary changes to their financial plans.
  • Uses a professional third-party service to complete their annual financial audit which includes a letter of recommendations.
  • Approves the audited financial statements and implements the recommendations from the professional third-party service.
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