Public policy dialogue and development activities of charities

Notice to the reader 

On August 15, 2018, the Honourable Diane Lebouthillier, Minister of National Revenue, and the Honourable Bill Morneau, Minister of Finance, issued a joint statement on the Government of Canada’s commitment to clarify the rules governing the political activities of charities. They confirmed the Government would amend the Income Tax Act to implement changes consistent with recommendation no. 3 of the Report of the Consultation Panel on the Political Activities of Charities.

To move forward with its commitment, the Government released draft legislative proposals on September 14, 2018, with a 30-day public consultation period, which would remove the existing quantitative limits on charities’ political activities, while still requiring that charities be operated for exclusively charitable purposes.

Taking into account feedback the Government received from stakeholders in response to the consultation on the draft legislative proposals, the Government has revised its legislative proposals. The information released by the Government on October 25, 2018, proposes new measures which will allow a charity to carry out unlimited “public policy dialogue and development activities” in support of its stated charitable purposes. Consequently, the Canada Revenue Agency will release updated questions and answers and information for charities on the administration of the new rules by the end of the calendar year.

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