Creating a booster club in any area can be a rewarding experience that results in a great support resource for all kinds of school departments and programs. However, there are a number of regulations and legalities that apply to the booster club process that are not consistent from state to state, same goes when creating an Arkansas booster club. Booostr.co has developed articles that detail the basic rules of creating a booster club established by each state in order to ease the process and help founders, donors, and volunteers avoid any confusion. Below, we’ve outlined the crucial steps of creating a booster club in Arkansas which will allow you to build the correct successful Arkansas booster club structure. For information about other states or for more general advice on the process of setting up booster clubs, check out Booostr’s Booster Club Management By State Tab or the Booostr Booster Club Blog!
In the state of Arkansas, 501(c)(3) organizations need to meet a multitude of requirements in order to ensure any kind of tax-exempt status. Firstly, your Arkansas booster club will need to assign at least three individuals to the position of Director in order to make sure that the organization operates efficiently and effectively. To create an Arkansas booster club, you also need to ensure that the name of your booster club isn’t the same as another nonprofit that’s active in the area when you submit the name of your booster club to the Arkansas Secretary of State.
Additionally, there’s a multitude of paperwork that’s involved in how you build your Arkansas booster club. The Articles of Incorporation are the most crucial forms your booster club will need to file with the Arkansas Secretary of State office. These documents are available for filing on the Arkansas Secretary of State official website. Certain language and text will need to be present in your clubs articles in order to receive tax-exempt status through the IRS and state, such as a clause that states any of your organizations assets will be transferred to another 501(c)(3) nonprofit in the event that your booster club come to an end.
To ensure that your organization has the correct Arkansas booster club structure, it’s important that there’s internal discussion about the objectives and regulations that are to be established within the club. Any bylaws set by members of the booster club should comply with Arkansas law, meaning your organization should come to a consensus on how meetings are held, how officers and directors will be elected, and how certain formalities are handled within the booster club.
The bylaws created within your Arkansas booster club don’t need to be filed with the state. They’re really there to act as a point of reference for how your organization should be running. Think of them as an operating manual, of sorts! Additionally, as you build your Arkansas booster club, your organization should put into place an efficient and convenient system for record keeping. With the sheer amount of documentation, it takes to establish a booster club, having a system for filing important forms would be a good idea. Additionally, assigning someone to the duty of record keeper could also take care of the booster club’s responsibility to enforce bylaws, take minutes in meetings, and other such tasks!
As you build your Arkansas booster club, it’s necessary that you apply for tax-exemption as a nonprofit organization through both the state and the federal government. To obtain federal tax-exemption, you’ll need to fill out Form 1023 with the IRS, which asks for a hefty amount of your organization’s financial history and an outline of your booster club’s structural plan. If your booster club is on the smaller side, you might be eligible to just fill out Form 1023-EZ which allows for a more streamlined version of the tax-exemption process.
Once you’ve obtained federal tax exemption, you’ll need to go through Arkansas’s tax agency to find a form which will allow you to apply for state tax exemption. Tax-exemption through the state will allow you to be exempt from “income, property, sales, and other state taxes.”
Similar to the how the Articles of Incorporation act as proof of establishment for your booster club, an EIN, or Employee Identification Number, is used as a way to formally identify a business or organization active within the United States. The application for an EIN can be found on the IRS official website. Once the application is submitted, you’ll receive your number instantly. Having something like an EIN will also make it easier for potential volunteers and donors to find your Arkansas booster club.
In conjunction with applying for an EIN, your booster club should also consider setting up a bank account that is strictly for the organization’s financials. You’ll need to gather a good portion of the standard documentation you filled out to present to the bank, such as your articles of incorporation and your EIN, in order to create a bank account for your booster club. Having an independent account that’s not tied to any one member will allow for an easier transfer of money in and out of accounts. Additionally, having an bank account will ensure a certain level of transparency and honesty within the organization.
Though there’s no singular way to create and maintain a booster club, there’s a number of rules and regulations that need to be followed depending on where you plan to found your organization. Though the process entails a large amount of paperwork and coordination with the Secretary of State and IRS, the result is worth it in the end. Booster clubs are great resources for a variety of school departments and programs! You might have even found an Arkansas booster club due to some of the legalities put in place, such as the EIN regulation.
In fact, if you’d like to locate any nonprofits that are active in your area similar to your own, check out the Booostr Index, a cohesive, ever-expanding list of every booster club active in the United States. Otherwise, if you’d like to focus on how you might best create and maintain a booster club in your own state, you can check out Booostr’s Booster Club Management By State Tab for more advice.