Ashton Embry has just published a report titled "What the MS Society of Canada Does Not Want You to Know About their Finances", and he has found not everything is as clear as it looks:
http://www.direct-ms.org/sites/default/ ... b%2011.pdf
A summary from the first page
First of all, it is important to realize that the Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada
is not a single charity but rather is a conglomeration of eight separate, but not at
arm’s length, charities. These include the National Office charity and one charity
for each of the seven regions. There is also a Multiple Sclerosis Research
Foundation which can be considered part of the MSSC family of charities.
There are two sources of financial information for the charities which make up the
Multiple Sclerosis Society of Canada. One is the Annual Report which MSSC
makes available every year and the latest one is for the 2008-2009 fiscal year. It
provides combined financial information for all the MSSC charities. The other
source is the Registered Charity Information Returns which each MSSC charity
files each year with the Canadian Revenue Agency and which are accessible on
the CRA website. The latest ones are for 2008-2009.
The financial information provided by MSSC in their annual report is somewhat
distorted by the somewhat questionable accounting practice of not including all
their direct fund raising costs as part of their expenditures and subtracting the
same amount from their revenue. Such fund raising costs consume almost 45%
of their total revenue and thus their exclusion makes the spending habits of
MSSC look much rosier and responsible than they actually are.