News and analysis
September 11, 2015

Coalition Urges Congress to Extend Charitable Tax Breaks

A coalition of more than 2,000 nonprofits, businesses, associations, and other organizations sent a letter Wednesday urging Congress to pass a slate of expired and expiring tax provisions known as "tax extenders."

The letter, signed by nonprofits including Independent Sector, Feeding America, and the Land Trust Alliance, implores Congress "to act immediately on a seamless, multiyear or permanent extension" of the tax provisions. Tax breaks designed to encourage food donations to food banks, land donation for conservation, and charitable gifts from individual retirement accounts are part of the more than 50 temporary tax provisions that expire annually.

Another provision would simplify the excise tax on private foundations to 1 percent on net investment income.

Failure to extend the tax breaks would result in a tax increase, the letter continues, and "inject instability and uncertainty into the economy and weaken confidence in the employment marketplace."

In February, the House passed a bill to make tax breaks for charitable giving permanent, but the Senate has preferred to renew the provisions on an annual basis. In July, the Senate Finance Committee approved legislation that would reinstate the expired provisions for the 2015 and 2016 tax years. Last year, Congress waited until mid-December to pass the extenders, timing that many nonprofit leaders say created donor uncertainty.

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