Washington, DC – The U.S. Office of Personnel Management (OPM) published a proposed rule to amend the Combined Federal Campaign (CFC) regulations. The proposed changes follow up on recommendations provided in July 2012 by the CFC 50 Commission. The Commission recommendations aimed to ensure that one hundred percent of the money employees donate goes directly to the charities of their choice. Commission members included federal employees, private campaign administrators, charitable organizations, and watchdog organizations. In order to implement many of the recommendations, OPM developed the proposed rule, which would make significant changes to CFC operations. The rule will save money and is designed to increase the CFC’s accessibility, accountability, transparency and affordability.
“These steps follow through on CFC 50 Commission’s excellent recommendations for strengthening the CFC,” said OPM Director Berry. “Getting one hundred percent of an employee’s donations to go to the charity they choose focuses energy on the CFC’s core purpose.”
Within the proposed rule there are 13 key areas of change:
1) The campaign solicitation period moves from September 1 – December 15 to October 1 – January 15.
2) New employees will be provided the opportunity to make a payroll deduction within 30 days of being hired.
3) A new Disaster Relief Program will be created to give employees the ability to contribute to relief programs within hours of a disaster.
4) The responsibilities of the Local Federal Coordinating Committees will be reduced. The name will be changed to Regional Coordinating Committees.
5) Pledges will be made through electronic means. Cash, check and money order contributions will be eliminated.
6) OPM will provide additional training and oversight for Regional Coordinating Committees.
7) The CFC Charity List and pledge form will be made available exclusively through electronic means.
8) The campaign administration functions will be consolidated into one or more Central Campaign Administrators.
9) The administrative costs will be recovered from application fees paid by the charities that apply for participation in the CFC.
10) A streamlined application process will permit charities to submit a full application every three years, with the requirement of submitting key documents in the two intermediary years.
11) The financial reporting requirements for charities with less than $250,000 in revenue will be eased. Those charities with revenue of $250,000 or more will continue to provide financial statements audited by an independent certified public accountant on an annual basis.
12) Federations will be required to disburse funds to member organizations on a specified cycle and will be prohibited from deducting dues/fees from the disbursement of CFC funds to member organizations.
13) Federal payroll offices will either disburse funds directly to participating charities or be required to provide detailed reports to the Central Campaign Administrator that will perform this function.
OPM remains committed to ensuring the participation of a variety of charities in the CFC, and to preserving the local character, sense of community, and employee involvement that has been a hallmark of the CFC. OPM encourages comments on how to best maintain these important attributes while improving the CFC for future use.
The proposed rule will be available for public comment on the Federal Register until June 7, 2013.
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