Subject: Re: [NYCGA Internet] Re: E-fundraising
From: evy brown
Date: Sun, 16 Oct 2011 10:49:38 -0700
To: internet_working_group@googlegroups.com

Jake,
This is not a decision for the group to make in a so what attitude.  There are laws in each state and federal laws to obey.  Anyone can offer to raise funds but unless the legal organization that ultimately receives the funds agrees, I don't see how they are holding themselves out to be a collector of donations, paying themselves a fee without an agreement (contract) by the not for profit public benefit corporation 501(c)3 is allowed. 

As CEO & President of whistlewatch.org I would never do this without notice and agreement of the full board that someone set up websites on our behalf to take donations to our organization who decided on their own to take a cut of the donations.  There are by-laws that require decisions by the board of directions, especially anything financial.  Each state has their own regulations on corporations.  A non profit is a "corporation." 

I'm not opposed to hiring a professional fundraiser but if someone wanted to collect donations to our organization, they better have had our permission and an iron clad accounting system.  All this info has to be reported to the state and the IRS.   

This is a legal issue not a philosophical discussion.  A pass the hat is ok attitude may create undesirable problems and subject the entire group to bad press.  I'd think the last thing anyone involved wants is a bad press and a government investigation.  Especially when the mission of the group is one to expose fraud, corruption, consumer protections and ultimately wants corporations to be transparent.   
Best,
Evy

On Sat, Oct 15, 2011 at 11:13 PM, Jake <jakedeg@gmail.com> wrote:
I think that there is a big difference between people within the GA
doing this kind of thing, and people on the outside doing this kind of
thing. If you're from the outside, this is community fundraising. Like
I said, it seems to me like it is the same as passing your hat around
at church or something. Maybe his donors wouldn't have given at all,
or even known about it if it wasn't for his outreach. Maybe they are
attracted to his earmarks for the money and would have been hesitant
to donate to the general donations link at NYCGA.

For all we know, anyone who makes a donation online could have
collected money first from friends and skimmed off the top. This is
between the independent fundraiser and their donators. If there were
fraud involved, I say we knock his kneecaps off. But if he's not
claiming to be us and not lying to anyone, while I may not approve of
or agree with what he is doing, I really don't see the problem, nor do
I see what business it is of ours, nor do I see what we can really do
about it, even if we decided we wanted to do something.

Regarding WePay, as of tonight, that is the same system we will be
using to process official online donations for now. So, in other
words, going straight to NYCGA is still going to WePay anyway.

Anyway, that is just one man's opinion of the situation. If you are
upset by it, though, and want to bring it up to Legal or Finance or
the GA, I don't think you need anyone's permission to speak up.

jake

On Oct 15, 10:02 am, Tim Pool <mediaincompl...@gmail.com> wrote:
> Most of what you see is him appeasing us. It has been a struggle to get him
> to change many things on the page, such as adding the NYCGA link
>
> I also heard anonymous contacted him and told him to stop.
>
> He told me in a message on facebook (which I'll gladly show anyone, and
> already showed Hero) that he wants to set up 100 wepay pages.
>
> My concern is stemming from his lies, his patchy approach to appeasing us,
> the 8% cost, and the fact that if he does create 100 donation pages it will
> decentralize
> donations, not only that but any money going to his page(s) are subject to
> his 8% costs.
>
> Are we ok with that? He can easily link ppl straight to NYCGA. Why bother
> with wepay? In fact wepay alone takes 3.5% so then hes going to send that
> 96.5% to AFGJ
> dont they take a cut too? Its needlessly diluting donations.
>
> Would people be mad at me if I made a wepay to raise money and kept 8%?
>
>    -



--
Evelynn Brown, J.D., LL.M
Chief Executive Officer
The Brown Center for Public Policy
     Ethics in Business Institute
     Whistlewatch.org

 
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