Watchlist of charities released

The Oregon Department of Justice has released a list of charities active in the state that spend a large amount of money on administrative costs.

It has dubbed the annual list "Oregon's 20 worst charities.

The 20 nonprofits on this year's list spent 25 percent or less of their funds on charitable programs.

Guidelines set by the Better Business Bureau say charitable organizations should dedicate at least 65 percent of their funds to charitable programs, with no more than 35 percent going toward administrative and fundraising costs.

The worst offender collecting money from Oregonians this year was the Law Enforcement Education Program of Troy, Mich. The group spent less than 2.7 percent of its nearly $2.3 million in annual expenditures on creating and supporting educational programs for the law enforcement community — its purported charitable mission.

Under current law, the Department of Justice cannot dictate how charities spend the funds they raise. However, the department said it releases this list annually to help consumers do some basic research to ensure their money is put to the use for which it is intended.

No charities headquartered in Oregon were on the list, but two Washington state-based charities are.

The complete list of charities and percentage of funds spent on charitable causes can be seen at

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