Acevo sets up governance reform meeting

RNIB chief Kevin Carey leads Progressive Governance Association project

Chief executives body Acevo is organising a meeting of people interested in reforming charity regulation and governance in York next month.

The meeting is part of the project by Kevin Carey, chairman of the RNIB, to set up a Progressive Governance Association.

Carey gave a speech at the Acevo annual conference earlier this month in which he called for charities to be allowed to pay their trustees and for executives to be permitted to sit on boards.

Giving trustees higher status in an organisation than executives encouraged charities to prioritise strategy over implementation, said Carey.

"You can't do implementation without strategy, but the most important thing for any organisation is implementation," he said.

Carey told Third Sector afterwards that charity regulation should focus on improving performance rather than legal compliance.

"Most people don't have problems with fraudulent fundraisers or bent accountants, which is what the Charity Commission is most worried about," he said.

"The biggest failing of the sector is that we are all underperforming. The sector is good at being critical, but not about the right things."

Carey said he had not thought about the sanctions a new regulator should have, but he doubted the need for any. He said he hadn't made his mind up about who should decide on charitable status. But company law should be sufficient to police charity accounts, he said.

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