Opinion: Tax Reform Has Potential To Unlock Giving

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Opinion: Tax Reform Has Potential To Unlock Giving

Tax reform is once again the focus of many discussions, debates and deliberations taking place on Capitol Hill. Considering that comprehensive federal tax reform was last enacted in in 1986, most agree that an updated tax code is needed — but not at the expense of our nation’s charities.

We are pleased that the charitable deduction is retained in current proposals.

However, the recently released tax reform framework calls for doubling the standard deduction for individuals and couples and eliminating tax deductions and credits to simplify the tax code. While a simplified tax code would be a welcome change for many Americans, I join many of our nonprofit colleagues in believing that the proposed reforms would have unintended consequences for giving and our sector’s ability to meet the needs of the people and communities we serve every day.

Here’s why: The proposed reforms would shrink the number of Americans who claim the itemized charitable deduction — the primary tax incentive for charitable giving — to 5 percent, as compared to the current 33 percent. . .

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