The Financial Planning Association will allow its chapters to remain separately incorporated after the organization's major restructuring is complete, a reversal on a key component of the original plan.
The group originally proposed folding its 89 separately incorporated chapters under a single legal entity. But the legal status of the chapters was a "major area of concern" for chapter leaders, who said the original plan hindered the autonomy they had over local affairs, according to the second version of the OneFPA Network Draft Plan, made public on Tuesday.
“We have taken the time to listen to our stakeholders and learn from their input, so we could adjust the plan in a manner that is responsive to their concerns and moves FPA toward its primary aim,” FPA Executive Director and CEO Lauren Schadle said in a statement.
The organization also announced as part of the second iteration a two-year beta test of the centralized functionality with up to 10 chapters, slated to begin Jan. 1, 2020. There will be an application process for chapters that wish to participate. Beta test chapters will have the option of forgoing their separate legal entities or maintaining them, but they will control their own accounting and financing. The organization will bear the cost of reestablishing a chapter's independence after the test if the chapter wants to do so, according to the most recent version of the plan.
Eventually, all FPA chapters will gain access to the centralized tools and resources. They will continue to control their budgets and reserves, sponsorship relationships, educational and networking programs, and choose their own leadership, governance and staff.
Outside of the legal status and beta test, the restructuring plan is largely unchanged. The FPA's task force leading the restructuring will continue to meet with its stakeholders during a 45-day comment period that begins today.
In November 2018, the restructuring plan called OneFPA Network was announced in an effort to strengthen the organization by better aligning its 23,000 members and 89 chapters.