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Electronic Code of Federal Regulations

e-CFR data is current as of July 9, 2020

Title 5Chapter ISubchapter BPart 950 → Subpart B

Title 5: Administrative Personnel

Subpart B—Eligibility Provisions

§950.201   Charity eligibility.
§950.202   Charity eligibility requirements.
§950.203   Public accountability standards.
§950.204   Eligibility decisions and appeals.

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§950.201   Charity eligibility.

(a) The Director shall annually:

(1) Determine the timetable and other procedures regarding application for inclusion in the Charity List; and

(2) Determine which organizations among those that apply qualify to be included in the National/International, International and Local parts of the Charity List. In order to determine whether an organization may participate in the campaign, the Director may request evidence of corrective action regarding any prior violation of regulation or directive, sanction, or penalty, as appropriate. The Director retains the ultimate authority to decide whether the organization has demonstrated, to the Director's satisfaction, that the organization has taken appropriate corrective action. Failure to demonstrate satisfactory corrective action or to respond to the Director's request for information within 10 business days of the date of the request may result in a determination that the organization will not be included in the Charity List.

(b) The Charity List will include each organization's CFC code and other information as determined by OPM.

(c) A charity must submit the full application the initial year it applies to participate in the CFC. In lieu of a full application, a charity may submit a verification application for the two years immediately following its submission of a full application.

(1) A verification application consists of certification of all applicable statements required by §§950.202 and 950.203, and submission of an IRS Form 990 or pro forma IRS Form 990, as defined in §950.203(a)(3).

(2) An organization that did not apply or was not approved for participation in the preceding campaign must submit a full application.

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§950.202   Charity eligibility requirements.

(a) The requirements for an organization to be listed in the Charity List shall include the following:

(1) Certification that it provides or conducts real services, benefits, assistance, or program activities (hereafter listed as “services”), in 15 or more different states or one or more foreign countries over the 3 calendar year period immediately preceding January 1 of the campaign application year. A schedule listing a detailed description of the services in each state (minimum 15) or foreign countries (minimum 1), including the year of service and documenting the location and date and year of each service, and the number of beneficiaries of each such service must be included with the CFC application. The schedule must make a clear showing of national or international presence. Broad descriptions of services and identical repetitive narratives will not be accepted in the sole discretion of OPM if they do not allow OPM to adequately determine that real services were provided or to accurately determine the individuals or entities who benefited. It must be clear in the documentation submitted that the organization provided at least one human health and welfare service in the calendar year prior to the year for which the organization is applying. Publications or other documents in lieu of a schedule detailing this information are not acceptable.

(i) Local charitable organizations are not required to have provided services in 15 states or a foreign country over the prior 3 years. The schedule for local organizations is only required to document services in their local area. Local organizations must also certify that the Organization Address submitted with the application is the primary location where the organization's services are rendered and/or its records are maintained.

(ii) This requirement cannot be met solely by the provision of services via telephone, unless the service is emergency in nature such as a suicide prevention hotline. The requirement is also not met solely by disseminating information and publications via the U.S. Postal Service or the Internet, unless it meets the criteria for web- based services as described in §950.202(a)(1)(iii), or a combination thereof.

(iii) Real services for web-based service organizations may be considered if the organization provides service logs or other records indicating the geographic distribution of users in each state. The organization must demonstrate the scope of services received by users over the three-year period immediately preceding the start of the campaign year involved. Reports that reflect only the number of hits or visits to a Web site are not sufficient to establish the provision of real services. In addition, two of the three following types of information must be provided to demonstrate the provision of real services, benefits, assistance, or program activities:

(A) Evidence that recipients, including members of the general public, dues paying members or affiliate organizations, have registered for use of the Web site;

(B) Summary reports that document customer feedback, through service satisfaction or utilization surveys, demonstration of two-way communications, such as an online class, or other mechanisms; and

(C) Documented evidence that recipients of web-based services paid a fee for the service.

(iv) Providing listings of affiliated groups does not demonstrate provision of real services by the applicant. Location of residence of organization members or location of residence of visitors to a facility does not substantiate provision of services. Schedules that describe activities conducted by an entity other than the applicant, such as a chapter or a support group, must include information documenting the applicant's role in the delivery of the service. Details may include items such as whether the chapter is funded by the applicant or how the applicant assisted in the delivery of the service. Applications that fail to include a description of how the applicant itself provides service may result in a denial.

(v) Organizations that provide student scholarships or fellowships must indicate the state in which the recipient resides, not the state of the school or place of fellowship. Mere dissemination of information does not demonstrate acceptable provision of real services.

(vi) While it is not expected that an organization maintain an office in each state or foreign country, a clear showing must be made of the actual services, benefits, assistance or activities provided in each state or foreign country. Organizations that provide services in one location may only count the state in which the services are provided toward their eligibility to participate on the national charity list. However, an organization may have beneficiaries from several states and want service to those beneficiaries considered toward the 15-state requirement to participate on the national Charity List. If an organization can document that the services are subsidized or were provided free-of-charge, and list the value of those services to each of the beneficiaries, then the service to the beneficiary may be considered a service in the state of the beneficiary's residence, similar to a financial grant or scholarship. For example, a medical institution providing free housing to family members of the patient during the length of the patient's stay must list the location of the medical institution, the city/state of residence of each beneficiary, the dates of service, and the value of the housing provided to each beneficiary's family members.

(vii) An organization's role in providing information to the media, such as authorship of an article for a newspaper, magazine, or journal, or serving as an interviewee or reference for a television news program, or the authorship of a book, does not in itself constitute a real service for CFC purposes. Likewise, the production and/or distribution of information, such as a report based on research, surveys conducted by the applicant organization, or publication of a policy position paper, does not, in itself, constitute an eligible service. With regard to media-related activities, research, and reports, the applicant must describe the manner in which beneficiaries requested or used the document or information in order to establish the provision of a real services, benefit, assistance, or program activity.

(viii) De minimis services, benefits, assistance, or other program activities in any state or foreign country will not be accepted as a basis for qualification as a national or international organization. Factors that OPM will consider in determining whether an organization's services, benefits, assistance or other program activities are de minimis include, but are not limited to: nature and extent of the service, benefit, assistance or activity; frequency, continuity, and duration; value of financial assistance awarded to individuals or entities; impact on, or benefit to, beneficiaries; and number of beneficiaries.

(2) Certification that it is an organization recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as tax exempt under 26 U.S.C. 501(c)(3) to which contributions are deductible under 26 U.S.C. 170(c)(2). The CFC will verify that each applicant's name and Employer Identification Number appears in the IRS Business Master File (BMF). If the organization does not appear in the BMF, one of the following must accompany the application:

(i) An affirmation letter from the IRS, dated on or after January 1 of the campaign year to which the organization is applying, that verifies the organization's current 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status.

(ii) A local affiliate of a national organization that is not separately incorporated must submit a certification from the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) or CEO equivalent of the national organization stating that it operates as a bonafide chapter or affiliate in good standing of the national organization and is covered by the national organization's 26 U.S.C. 501(c)(3) tax exemption. The letter must be signed and dated on or after October 1 of the calendar year preceding the campaign year for which the organization is applying.

(iii) For central organizations that are churches, the CFC will accept a copy of its most recently published listing (such as a church directory) of section 501(c)(3) organizations that are included in the group exemption held by the central organization. A subordinate may alternatively obtain a letter from the central organization affirming the subordinate's status as an organization exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code that is included in the group exemption held by the central organization.

(iv) Family Support and Youth Activities (FSYA) located on military installations in the United States and Family Support and Youth Programs (FSYP) located on military installations overseas must provide a copy of certification by the commander of a military installation, as outlined in paragraphs (a)(3) and (4) of this section, to demonstrate tax-exempt status.

(3) Family support and youth activities or programs certified by the commander of a military installation as meeting the eligibility criteria contained in paragraphs (a)(3) and (4) of this section may appear on the list of local organizations and be supported from CFC funds. Family support and youth activities may participate in the CFC as a member of a federation at the discretion of the certifying commander.

(4) A family support and youth activity or program must:

(i) Be a nonprofit, tax-exempt organization that provides family service programs or youth activity programs to personnel in the Command and be a Non-Appropriated Fund Instrumentality that supports the installation MWR/FSYA/FSYP program. The activity must not receive a majority of its financial support from appropriated funds.

(ii) Have a high degree of integrity and responsibility in the conduct of their affairs. Contributions received must be used effectively for the announced purposes of the organization.

(iii) Be directed by the base Non-Appropriated Fund Council or an active voluntary board of directors which serves without compensation and holds regular meetings.

(iv) Conduct its fiscal operations in accordance with a detailed annual budget, prepared and approved at the beginning of the fiscal year. Any significant variations from the approved budget must have prior authorization from the Non-Appropriated Fund Council or the directors. The family support and youth activities must have accounting procedures acceptable to an installation auditor and the inspector general.

(v) Have a policy and practice of nondiscrimination on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity or national origin applicable to persons served by the organization.

(vi) Prepare an annual report which includes a full description of the organization's activities and accomplishments. These reports must be made available to the public upon request.

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§950.203   Public accountability standards.

(a) To ensure organizations wishing to solicit donations from Federal employees in the workplace are portraying accurately their programs and benefits, each organization seeking eligibility must meet annually applicable standards and certification requirements. Each organization, other than FSYA or FSYP, wishing to participate must:

(1) Certify that the organization is a human health and welfare organization providing services, benefits, or assistance to, or conducting activities affecting, human health and welfare. The organization's application must provide documentation describing the health and human welfare benefits provided by the organization within the previous calendar year;

(2) Subject to the exceptions listed in this section, certify that it accounts for its funds on an accrual basis in accordance with United States or International generally accepted accounting principles and that an audit of its fiscal operations is completed annually by an independent certified public accountant in accordance with generally accepted auditing standards. A copy of the organization's most recent annual audited financial statements must be included with the application. The statements must include all statements required for voluntary health and welfare organizations by the United States Financial Accounting Standards Board or the International Accounting Standards Board. The audited financial statements must cover the fiscal period ending not more than 18 months prior to the January of the year of the campaign for which the organization is applying. For example, the audited financial statements included in the 2014 application must cover the fiscal period ending on or after June 30, 2012.

(i) An organization with annual revenue of less than $100,000 reported on its IRS Form 990 or pro forma IRS Form 990 submitted to the CFC is not required to undergo an audit, submit audited financial statements, or to account for its funds on an accrual basis in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles. Rather, the organization must certify that it has controls in place to ensure that funds are properly accounted for and that it can provide accurate and timely financial information to interested parties.

(ii) An organization with annual revenue of at least $100,000 but less than $250,000 is not required to undergo an audit. The organization must certify that its financial statements are reviewed by an independent certified public accountant on an annual basis or are audited by an independent public accountant on an annual basis. A copy of the reviewed or audited financial statements must be included with the application.

(3) Certify that it prepares and submits to the IRS a complete copy of the organization's IRS Form 990 or that it is not required to prepare and submit an IRS Form 990 to the IRS. Provide a completed copy of the organization's IRS Form 990 submitted to the IRS covering a fiscal period ending not more than 18 months prior to the January of the year of the campaign for which the organization is applying, including signature, and all supplemental schedules, with the application, or if not required to file an IRS Form 990, provide a pro forma IRS Form 990. Pro forma IRS Form 990 instructions will be posted on the OPM Web site and included in the application instructions. IRS Forms 990EZ, 990PF, and comparable forms are not acceptable substitutes. The IRS Form 990 and audited financial statements, if required, must cover the same fiscal period.

(4) Provide a computation of the organization's percentage of total support and revenue spent on administrative and fundraising. This percentage shall be computed from information on the IRS Form 990 submitted pursuant to paragraph (a)(3) of this section.

(5) Certify that the organization is directed by an active and responsible governing body whose members have no material conflict of interest and, a majority of which serve without compensation.

(6) Certify that the organization's fundraising practices prohibit the sale or lease of its CFC contributor lists.

(7) Certify that its publicity and promotional activities are based upon its actual program and operations, are truthful and non-deceptive, and make no exaggerated or misleading claims.

(8) Certify that contributions are effectively used for the announced purposes of the charitable organization.

(9) Provide a statement that the certifying official is authorized by the organization to certify and affirm all statements required for inclusion on the Charity List.

(b) The Director shall review these applications for accuracy, completeness, and compliance with these regulations. Failure to supply any of this information may be judged a failure to comply with the requirements of public accountability, and the charitable organization may be ruled ineligible for inclusion on the Charity List.

(c) The Director may request such additional information as the Director deems necessary to complete these reviews. An organization that fails to comply with such requests within 10 calendar days from the date of receipt of the request may be judged ineligible.

(d) The required certifications and documentation must have been completed and submitted prior to the application filing deadline.

(e) The Director may waive any of these standards and certifications upon a showing of extenuating circumstances.

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§950.204   Eligibility decisions and appeals.

(a) Organizations applying for participation in the CFC will be notified of the eligibility decision electronically via the email address(es) listed in the charity application.

(b) Organizations that apply and are denied eligibility for inclusion on the Charity List may appeal the decision by submitting a request for reconsideration. This request must be received within 10 business days from the date the decision to deny eligibility was sent via email and shall be limited to those facts justifying the reversal of the original decision.

(c) All appeals must:

(1) Be in writing;

(2) Be received by the Director within 10 business days of the date the decision to deny the application was sent via email;

(3) Include a statement explaining the reason(s) why eligibility should be granted; and

(4) Include a copy of the communication from OPM disapproving the original application and supporting information to justify the reversal of the original decision.

(d) Applications or appeals of an adverse eligibility determination must be submitted in a timely manner as indicated above.

(e) Appeals may not be used to supplement applications with documents that did not exist or were not set forth in final form prior to the application deadline. For example, audited financial statements that were not prepared or were in draft form at the time of the deadline cannot be used to document eligibility. Similarly, charities that had applied for, but had not obtained, 501(c)(3) status from the IRS by the CFC application deadline are not eligible to participate for that campaign year.

(f) The Director's decision is final for administrative purposes.

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