Business/Organization Requirements and Record Keeping
Starting and building a credible and trustworthy business requires a current knowledge of state and federal laws that apply to many different types of businesses and organizations. It also requires a commitment to comply with those laws.
There are many online resources and consulting services to help with business startup and provide technical assistance with organizational issues that can arise during the lifetime of a business. The responsibility to be well informed about current laws and other requirements, stay updated about changes, and ensure that employees and others who are part of the business operations understand their respective responsibilities rests with the leadership of the business or organization.
The GCDD expects that suppliers who are awarded funds for grant projects and programs are in full compliance with all applicable state and federal laws, and other requirements. This is true regardless of the dollar amount involved, or the type or size of the business. These requirements include a record keeping system that is best suited to the business, and will help monitor and track income and expenses, and other financial and business transactions.
Included in this section are several informational items and resources that may be of assistance to you. They are not intended to be exhaustive or the only items that your particular business or organization needs to be aware of, understand, and apply.
Following are the included items and resources, and a brief description of each:
Uniform Administrative Requirements, Cost Principles and Audit Requirements for Federal Awards (12/26/13): This Uniform Guidance was officially implemented in December 2014 by the Council on Financial Assistance Reform (COFAR). The Uniform Guidance is a "government-wide framework for grants management" that combines multiple earlier OMB circulars. The purpose of these reforms is to reduce the administrative burden on award recipients as well as guard against the risk of waste and misuse of Federal funds. The Uniform Guidance does the following:
- Removes previous guidance that is conflicting and establishes standard language;
- Directs the focus of audits on areas that have been identified as at risk for waste, fraud and abuse;
- Lays the groundwork for Federal agencies to standardize the processing of data;
- Clarifies and updates cost reporting guidelines for award recipients. (2 CFR, Subtitle A, Chapter 11, Part 200-299)
- Questions and Answers about Sarbanes-Oxley: This is an overview of Sarbanes-Oxley, a federal law that grew out of the corporate and accounting scandals of Enron, Tyco, and WorldCom. As a result of this law, new rules were established in specific accounting and compliance areas. These rules impact how corporations conduct themselves in these areas and are considered best practices for nonprofits.
- Minnesota Department of Revenue: The Department of Revenue web site includes forms and instructions, and online services for business taxpayers.
- Nonprofit Law Resource Library: This online resource includes a list of initial business filings for Minnesota nonprofit organizations with complete contact information for each of the state offices where information and forms can be obtained and business filings submitted.
- Internal Revenue Service Publication 583: This publication discusses areas related to taxes and record keeping that new business owners need to know.
- Department of Employment and Economic Development (DEED): The DEED web site includes information on starting a business with links to resources for addressing employer issues, business tax issues, financing, and small business assistance. One of the links is to the Minnesota Small Business Resource Guide.
The Guide includes business resources, financing programs through the Small Business Administration, and a business startup kit.
- Minnesota Statute 43A.38: This state law is a code of ethics that applies to employees in the executive branch and affects those who do business with executive branch agencies.
- Minnesota Council of NonProfits: The Council provides information and resources about starting a nonprofit in Minnesota.
- MAP for Nonprofits: This organization provides management services to nonprofits in the Twin Cities. Services include assistance with strategic planning, financial and operational assessment, and board training.
- Business.USA.Gov: This is a business link to the US Government that, in turn, links to business topics in each state.
- BuzGate: This web site serves as a portal for small businesses. Frequently Asked Questions(FAQ's) about starting a new business are state specific with links to state offices and resources, and how to find answers to the FAQ's.
- Minnesota Attorney General's Office, Registration and Reporting – Charities and Charitable Trusts: Most charitable organizations that solicit donations or have significant charitable assets must register and file an annual report and other documents with the Attorney General's Office. More information is also available at A Guide to Minnesota's Charities Laws.