SALEM, NH—In a bold move, six former members of the 8-member Board of Advisors of Salem, NH-based non-profit We Care Charity (WCC) have complained to the Internal Revenue Service and the New Hampshire Attorney General’s office about the organization’s accounting irregularities, funds for personal use and discrepancies in tax filings for several years.
“Yes – it is a fact that IRS and State of NH Attorney general have been informed about the Tax return errors and irregularities,” said Jay Srinivasan of the 8-member non-binding WCC Board of Advisors, whose all members have resigned.
The complaint to IRS and NH Attorney General was submitted jointly by the following six members on Aug 14, 2018: Ranga Narasimhan, Subu Kota, Dr. Manohar Rao, Mr. Srinivasan, Nehal Patel and Dinesh Tanna, following a Board of Advisors meeting. This meeting was not attended by Prashanth Palakurthi and Bipin Parekh.
Some members of the Indian community said that it was an unprecedented and bold move that sends a strong message to all non-profit organizations and executives and members of their board to take their fiscal and organizational responsibilities seriously and judiciously.
Kaplesh Kumar, an Indian community leader who has been involved with various organizations, said that WCC should fix the errors immediately and file amended tax papers.
“They should clear out all these issues with IRS and hire a tax attorney,” said Mr. Kumar as a concerned member of the Indian community. “All this reflects on the community.
It is in everyone’s interest to sort it out.”
WCC Founder and President Shefali Desai Kalyani did not respond to INDIA New England News’ request for comment on this story by press time. In an earlier statement, however, Ms. kalyani had said that she appreciated the recommendations of the Board of Advisors on improvements in accounting practices and governance.
“We have the right professionals working on addressing the Board of Advisors’ recommendations. We are committed to fixing any and all mistakes that may have been made. We need to give them the time to do their work and once complete, we will share the appropriate information to the community,” Ms. Kalyani said then. “We will appoint a new board of advisors at the appropriate time. In the mean-time we continue to do our work of feeding the hungry and serving those in need.”
All members of the Board of Advisors resigned after Mr. Srinivasan pointed out some accounting and tax discrepancies in the organization’s books in the past few years.
Mr. Srinivasan told INDIA New England News earlier that he came to know of the discrepancies in the tax returns through publicly available document for non-profits around April of this year and then found out that the accountant hired by WCC was not a CPA.
We Care Charity is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization based in Salem, NH. Its mission is to provide food and empowering children, individuals and families in crisis in New England and beyond.
Here is a summary of the letter sent to IRS as provided to INDIA New England News:
- Possible under statement of revenues from 2013 through 2015 (Approximately $83,000)
- Ending balances not carried forward properly from 2015 to 2016 ( Ending balance in 2015: $52,540.. Carried over in 2016: $1,823.
- Charity money transferred from Charity accounts to personal accounts in US to personal accounts in India (WCC President’s own personal admission).
- Possible – Bank accounts in India were not reported in Schedule B of personal income tax.
- Only portion of the charity money collected for specific purposes was used for the purpose it was collected (Private school program) – Also no formal transfer of money exists from US bank statements of the charity to University of Kentucky.
- Bank balances do not match the Quickbooks balances and significant variance exists to the tune of tens of thousands of dollars. In 2016 alone the variance exists to the tune of approximately $75,000.
- llegal Money transfer (Charity money transferred to personal account of a family member, then he gave the equivalent amount of cash in rupees in India).
- Possible use of charity money for home improvement projects, such as shelves purchase for installation at home.
- Assets such as refrigerator, freezer and expensive Apple Mac Pro computers purchased from charity funds not shown as assets in the tax returns in 2015, 2016 and 2017. There is no depreciation accumulation account exists in the WCC books and the cash balances of depreciation are not carried over.