Statement on The Better Public Trust from the Independent Charities Registration Board

Published 24 April 2019

In its decision dated 24 April 2019 the independent Charities Registration Board (the “Board”) has decided to decline The Better Public Trust’s (the “Trust”) application to be a registered charity because it does not advance exclusively charitable purposes.

The role of the Board is to maintain the integrity of the Charities Register by ensuring that entities on the Charities Register qualify for registration.

The Board makes its decisions based on the facts before it applying the law including relevant case law. The Board must decline to register applications from organisations when they do not advance exclusively charitable purposes for the public benefit.

The Board has declined the Trust’s application to be registered because it does not advance exclusively charitable purposes.

The Board considers the Trust has a primary purpose to promote its own points of view on public service media (“PSM”) that does not advance a public benefit in a way previously accepted as charitable.

The Board considers that the Trust’s focus is promoting its own views on the importance and benefits of PSM, and advocating for increased funding and support for PSM. The Board does not consider the Trust’s advocacy for PSM is directed towards a charitable end goal.

Although the Board considers some of the Trust’s activities may advance education, the Board considers the focus of the Trust is promoting its points of view on PSM.

In making its decision, the Board is not taking a position on whether or not PSM is of benefit for New Zealand, but on the Trust’s eligibility for registration under the Charities Act 2005. 

Roger Holmes Miller

Charities Registration Board

View the decision here (external link)