Theatre group struck off

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Queenstown’s Remarkable Theatre group has been stripped of charitable status but the president says that’s no big deal. 

The Charities Commission deregistered Remarkable Theatre in May because its 2011 accounts weren’t filed on time and in the right format, Remarkable Theatre’s president Jane Robertson confirms. 

Robertson downplays the deregistration: “It’s just a really minor thing.” 

The accounts deadline was September 30, 2011, according to Charities Commission records. 

Robertson says: “We’d submitted the accounts but in order to get them right we ran out of time.” 

The group’s now filed proper accounts and applied for re-registration as a charity, she confirms. 

“It’s important to maintain [charitable status] for grant purposes but not all funding agencies require that because we’re an incorporated society,” Robertson says. 

Re-registration could take a long time – Robertson claims several other charities have suffered the same hiccup and the Charities Commission is also being restructured. 

Remarkable Theatre – formerly Queenstown Shakespeare – lost $40,000 four years ago on flop show Tapanui Tanzi.
Its accounting records are all above board and finances are in good shape again, Robertson says. 

However, being back in the black means the loss of charitable status – however temporarily – will saddle Remarkable Theatre with a tax bill. 

According to Charities Commission records, this is the third strike-off for a Queenstown charitable entity. 

In August 2010, the council-backed Queenstown Lakes Community Housing Trust was deemed ineligible for charitable status and in 2009 the Queenstown Auto Extravaganza Trust was struck off for not filing accounts.