The Collision Industry Loses Chuck Mayne

Chuck Mayne, Global Manager of Akzo Nobel Coatings, and a very active industry player, passed away on Valentine’s Day at the age of 66.
Mayne worked for AkzoNobel for nearly three decades and was an active contributor to the collision repair industry. He was a regular at IBIS, served as the vice-chair of the Collision Industry Conference (CIC) marketing committee and served on the Collision Industry Foundation board of trustees.
He will be sadly missed.

Changes to financial reporting

By Marcus Ohm*

Late last year both the Australian Accounting Standards Board (AASB) and the Federal Treasury released proposals for substantial changes in financial reporting in Australia.
If enacted, they will give rise to far-reaching changes in how and what many businesses report. In particular, there is likely to be a significant impact on those businesses that currently prepare special purpose financial statements.
Special purpose statements do not necessarily comply with all the requirements of accounting standards. They are commonly prepared by small and medium sized businesses who have only a limited range of users of their accounts (eg financial data for management, basis for tax return, etc).
Under the proposals, the ???reporting entity??? concept will be removed and all lodged accounts will be considered general purpose. However, there will be a ???reduced disclosure regime??? for those organisations without public accountability.
AASB???s consultation paper contained examples of reduced disclosures and these indicate that the changes will not be as far-reaching as many had hoped for. It is likely that the changes will give rise to a greater compliance burden for those currently preparing special purpose accounts. These changes will therefore need to be planned for appropriately.

Parent entity financial statements
It has also been proposed that the Corporations Act requirement (which requires parent company accounts to be prepared when consolidated accounts are prepared) will be removed. Instead, organisations will need to present summarised financial information for the parent within the notes to the accounts.
At first glance this would appear to be a sound move. However, the benefits are reduced by the fact that summarised financial information still has to be prepared and because this requirement is extended to half-yearly reporting.

Dividends
Another change is that the existing ???profits??? test is likely to be replaced with a ???solvency??? test in determining the ability to pay dividends.
This may give greater flexibility to companies in determining when dividends can be paid, particularly where substantial non-cash items may have adversely affected profit in a particular year.
The proposal allows for early adoption of the reduced disclosure regime from 30 June 2010 but the mandatory adoption date will be for annual reporting periods beginning on or after 1 July 2012. ??

* Marcus Ohm is a partner with accountants and business and financial advisers HLB Mann Judd Perth

Monitor Contributions To Super Carefully

By Andrew Yee*

As the financial year draws to a close, people who usually top up their superannuation contributions at this time of the year must take care not to over-contribute.
The ATO is cracking down on people exceeding their contribution limits and, for those who do, the penalties can be severe.
Excess superannuation contributions that are made (intentionally or unintentionally) above the contributions cap are liable for tax rates that can be as high as 93 percent.
It is easy to fall foul of the new restrictions on contributions that have been introduced for this year.
While members of super funds may believe that they know how much has already been contributed on their behalf during the course of the financial year, there are a number of ways contributions could have been made that they have overlooked.
For example, people who received a Christmas bonus may be unaware that their employer paid the nine percent superannuation contribution levy on it.
Another common mistake that some make is to think that the cap only applies to contributions made above the nine percent superannuation guarantee paid by their employer.
But the age old problem concerning when year end contributions have been made now carries greater significance because if you get the timing wrong, you may be slugged for excess tax.
For example a contribution made this financial year on behalf of the previous year???s earnings, is taken into account for this year???s contribution caps.
With payments made in one year, but not banked until the next, the general rule is that a contribution is considered to have been made when the superannuation fund gains access to the funds, not when the arrangements for payments have been made.
People therefore need to be very careful and review and monitor all superannuation contributions made by them or on their behalf, and to ensure that contributions are correctly reported by their superannuation funds. ??

* Andrew Yee is a director with accountants and business and financial advisers HLB Mann Judd Sydney

PPG Sells Auto Glass Business

PPG Industries Inc has sold a controlling stake in its automotive glass business to a new company formed by investment firm Kohlberg & Co. LLC for A$345 million.

Britain Adopts Scrappage Incentive

Britain approved a 10-month program enticing consumers to scrap older vehicles, becoming the latest European country to adopt a sales incentive that’s stalled in the US Congress.