Division 30-15 of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1997
allows cultural organisations deductible gift recipient status if
they fall into one of the specified categories under Section 30-100
of the Act. After registration on the Register of Cultural
Organisations, income tax exemption and deductible gift recipient
status is automatically issued by the ATO without further
The Act specifies the following entities as cultural
organisations: a public fund that is on the register of cultural
organisations, or a public library or a public museum or a public
art gallery or an institution consisting of a public library,
public museum and public art gallery or any two of them.
A cultural organisation is defined under Section 30-300 as an
organisation which has as its principal purpose the promotion of
literature, music, a performing art, a visual art, a craft, design,
film, video, television, radio, community arts, arts of Indigenous
persons or moveable cultural heritage. To determine the main
purpose of an organisation consideration of the organisation's
constituent documents, activities and use of funds and history is
The Register of Cultural Organisations is established under
s30-F of the Act.
Any application for registration of a cultural organisation must
be made to the Federal Ministry for the Arts which assesses the
application and forwards it to the Minister for the Arts and the
Treasurer. An application for registration on the Register of
Cultural Organisations must include:
A copy of the Constitution.
Explanation of a track record of promoting cultural events over
a period of at least 2 years.
Identification of income and expenditure, particularly any
government grants received in the preceding 2 year period.
A budget for the proposed future 12 month period.
A list of patrons and supporters.
A list of programs planned for performance.
Names and profiles of the persons who will hold positions of
responsibility on the governing body.
Evidence that the activities of the organisation have been
uninterrupted in the preceding 2 year period.
Evidence that the objects and activities will add to the
cultural environment and not detract from it or masquerade as
Once all this material is accumulated and the application is
made extensive patience is required because the Minister for Arts
and Treasurer will take a minimum of 18 months to analyse the
application. During the 18 month period an applicant should
continue with their activities without becoming discouraged.
The content of this article is intended to provide a general
guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought
about your specific circumstances.
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