12 February 2015

Charity Bills Pass House of Representatives, Senate Finance Committee

The House of Representatives passed today a package of four charity-related bills, H.R. 644, that includes legislation sponsored by Representatives Erik Paulsen (R-MN) and Danny Davis (D-IL) to streamline the private foundation excise tax to one percent – a provision the Alliance for Charitable Reform (ACR) has promoted for several years. H.R. 644 also makes permanent the IRA charitable rollover, the deduction for gifts of food inventory, and the deduction for conservation easements.

ACR applauds this bill’s passage due to the critical support it will provide to the charitable sector. All four provisions included in today’s package were passed by the House Ways and Means Committee on February 4. The bill now heads to the Senate where further action is unknown at this time.

In addition to the activity in the House, the Senate Finance Committee marked up and approved several charity-related bills on Wednesday as part of a larger package of 17 bills. Included in the package is legislation that would require the Internal Revenue Service to notify exempt organizations before revoking exempt status for failing to file information returns. Last year, ACR wrote a letter in support of this bill, S. 400, as sponsored by new Finance Committee Member Dan Coats (R-IN). The Finance Committee also approved legislation providing an exception to the private foundation excess business holdings rules for certain philanthropic business holdings, and a bill providing special rules concerning charitable contributions to, and public charity status of, agricultural research organizations.

We expect the full Senate to take up these bills, although not any time soon. We’ll continue to keep you updated as both Chambers consider important charity-related legislation.