17 June 2016

Hatch Extols Charitable Giving as Nonprofit Leaders Tell Congress to ‘Grow Charity Now’

The Alliance for Charitable Reform partnered with the Council on Foundations and Independent Sector to bring nonprofit leaders to Washington, D.C. on June 16 to meet with congressional offices about current legislation supporting charitable giving. The fly in/speak out day was dubbed “Grow Charity Now.”

“Our organizations all understand that philanthropy and charitable giving are central to American life, and that it is important to work together to tell our story on Capitol Hill and with state legislatures across the country,” said Adam Meyerson, president of The Philanthropy Roundtable.

Vice President of Public Policy at Independent Sector, Geoffrey Plague, reiterated the necessity of meeting with policymakers even in a period of legislative uncertainty.

“We have seen proposal after proposal in recent years that would change various aspects of the way the independent sector or charitable giving is treated, specifically regarding the charitable deduction,” Plague said.

Nonprofit leaders met with policymakers to discuss bills such as S. 2750, the Charities Helping Americans Regularly Throughout the Year Act. The CHARITY Act would create a flat one-percent private foundation excise tax and expand the IRA rollover to include distributions to donor-advised funds (DAFs), and contains language encouraging Congress not to diminish the charitable deduction in tax reform. Another bill discussed was H.R. 4907, the Grow Philanthropy Act, which also includes the expanded IRA charitable rollover provision, as well as H.R. 640, the Private Foundation Excise Tax Simplification Act, which contains the one percent PF excise tax provision.

On June 15, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch provided a boost for those visiting congressional offices when he submitted a statement to the congressional record voicing his support for charitable giving and the charitable deduction.

“The charitable tax deduction is truly special,” Hatch said in the statement. “It is the only deduction that encourages you not to spend or invest your income, but to give it away. Every charitable gift has one thing in common: The donor is always left worse off financially, but society is made better.”

He also specifically mentioned the Grow Charity Now visits, noting that “later this week, the Alliance for Charitable Reform, the Council on Foundations, and the Independent Sector will send its members to fan out across Capitol Hill to tell Members of Congress and their staffs about the good and essential work charities and nonprofits perform every day in America.”

See some of the social media updates below from those who participated in Grow Charity Now.