Our Agricultural Societies, Sub Chambers and the state body (QCAS) are always seeking the support of local professionals such as
- Doctor's and medical professionals
- Subject matter experts (Judges)
to assist with corporate governance and many other compliance issues relating to operating large volunteer events.
This is a great way for Professionals to support their community, providing their knowledge and experience to a well respected community event. It also provides an opportunity for young professionals working in a new community to get to know and understand how the community is driven and provides an avenue to establish themselves within the community.
On occasions these professionals fill honorary roles within the management committee of the society or are selected on an annual basis to fill roles such as judges etc. and are paid an honorarium to cover expenses.
An Honorarium is an ex gratia payment (i.e., a payment made without the giver recognising themselves as having any liability or legal obligation) made to a person for their services in a volunteer capacity or for services for which fees are not traditionally required. This is used by groups such as schools, sporting clubs and agricultural societies to pay coaches and other professionals for their costs. Another example includes the payment to a guest speaker at a conference to cover their travel, accommodation, or preparation time. They are ostensibly receiving a reimbursement for their costs in their voluntary role.
Honorarium payments are usually paid in lieu of reimbursement of travel expenses or any other payment of fees for service.
The concept of an honorarium has a tax implication. In Australia recipients of these funds make a tax declaration (known as the hobbyist form) to the tax office and therefore do not have to include this money in their annual tax return.