Legislative requirements

The importance of having a strong legislative framework to safeguard the funds has been stressed already. The legislation must also address the purposes for which the funds are to be used and the kinds of organizational structures which will be put in place to administer those funds.

A review of existing statutes reveals several commonalities regardless of the organizational structure being governed. These include:

  • The overall purposes of the Act. For example, to actively discourage tobacco smoking, to promote good health, and to prevent illness.
  • A description of the organization’s legal status.
  • A statement about the organization’s relationship with the relevant ministry and/or government department. This includes reporting requirements and if/how the ministry may give directions to the organization.
  • Clearly defined objectives for the organization.
  • The size and method of appointment of the governing body. If relevant, this may expand to include terms of appointment and remuneration allowances, as well as decision-making processes.
  • The source(s) and level of funding for the organization.
    • If the source of funds is tobacco tax, the amount, preferably a percentage of the wholesale sales tax or other tax amount, should be included if not already specified in other legislation. Ideally, the funding would not be subjected to any discretionary policy which would allow for reallocation of those funds for certain reasons. Other funding sources may include donations, grants or other government appropriations. The method and frequency of fund payment should be referenced, including details of how and where the funds are to be transferred, as well as the treatment of any interest accrued.
  • If applicable, time limits set in relation to fund disbursement, or a stipulation that a minimum percentage of the funds must be allocated to specific areas (e.g. research or sports activities).
  • Any activities that are not supported by the fund (e.g. clinical research).
  • Monitoring and evaluation requirements for the fund.

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