MILLBROOK - The Glooscap Heritage Society is opposing a move by the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) to strip it of its charitable status and believes the former standing will be returned.
Joyce Mingo, executive director of the Glooscap Heritage Centre and Mi'kmaq museum, said in a written statement that the society will "push" the CRA to reverse its decision.
"They are confident that their right to charitable status will then be re-established and this revocation of their charitable status will then be reversed," she said in the statement.
Late last week, the CRA gave notice that the native heritage society based in Millbrook was to lose its charitable status on Saturday after an investigation determined the group had devoted a significant portion of its resources to a tax shelter.
The agency said the loss of status is in relation to the society's financial relationship with the Global Learning Gifting Initiative.
According to the CRA, an audit found that over a two-year period starting on Jan. 1, 2008, the society received more than $24.8 million in cash and property. Of the $13.4 million in cash that was received, the agency says the society paid more than $3.75 million to the promoters of the tax shelter.
The audit also found that the society was directed to pay more than $8.76 million to another charity participating in the tax shelter, while the society retained $900,000 for its own activities.
The CRA said further that the society had issued $11.4 million in tax receipts that were grossly inflated.
Organizations that lose their charitable registration can't issue tax receipts for donation.
Mingo said that while the society regrets the CRA has chosen to revoke its registration status without first allowing time for consideration of the comprehensive notice of objection to the proposed revocation, filed last month, it will push to have its notice of objection addressed "as soon as possible".
"They are confident that their right to charitable status will then be re-established and this revocation of their charitable status will then be reversed," she said.
"Recently CRA confirmed that it considers that GHS at all times acted in good faith in respect of activities related to its charitable status."
Mingo said that acknowledgment was made to the society's legal representatives from the Halifax law firm of McInnes Cooper in Halifax during a Supreme Court of Canada hearing in Ottawa on Oct. 3.