UJC APPLAUDS HOUSE PROPOSAL TO REINSTATE IRA CHARITABLE ROLLOVER
May 21, 2008
Senate Still Must Pass Legislation Before Much Needed Incentive is Available for 2008
WASHINGTON, D.C. – New legislation approved by the U.S. House of Representatives today would ensure individuals could continue to make charitable contributions from their retirement accounts without penalty, says leading Jewish advocacy group.
On Wednesday, the House approved the Renewable Energy and Job Creation Act of 2008. This legislation provides relief for businesses, families and individuals by extending numerous tax exemptions that have either expired or are expiring later this year. Among the provisions that would be reinstated and extended upon enactment of this bill is a provision that would allow individuals 70 ½ and older to transfer tax-free up to $100,000 per year from their Individual Retirement Account (IRA) to a qualified charity.
United Jewish Communities (UJC), which is one of the nation’s leading philanthropic networks, is a leader in the coalition that has actively promoted the creation of an IRA Charitable Rollover for the past decade. UJC has received over $20 million from donors through the IRA Charitable Rollover program during 2006 and 2007.
“Nonprofits like UJC provide much needed services to our nation’s vulnerable, including food, shelter, healthcare, and other programs,” said William C. Daroff, United Jewish Communities’ Vice President for Public Policy and Director of the Washington office. “However, no nonprofit is able to provide these services without the generous support of its membership. The IRA Charitable Rollover incentive is an effective fundraising tool that gives us additional resources that we can pass on to those who need it the most.”
Extending and expanding the IRA Charitable Rollover remains one of UJC’s legislative priorities. Until this provision is permanently enacted, UJC will continue to work with members of the House and Senate tax-writing committees as well as Congressional leadership to ensure charitable organizations are given every opportunity to raise needed funding to support its causes.
Until a permanent fix can be enacted, UJC has encouraged Congress to approve an extension of the IRA Charitable Rollover provisions. In addition to activating its national network of grassroots activists, UJC stressed the importance of this much needed giving program, especially in periods of economic downturn, and encouraged immediate consideration by the full House of Representatives in a letter last week to House Committee on Ways and Means Chairman Charles Rangel (D-NY) and Ranking Republican Member Jim McCrery (R-LA).
The House approved the Renewable Energy and Job Creation Act by a bipartisan vote of 263-160. UJC will now be working to ensure that the Senate takes up this legislation as soon as possible.
United Jewish Communities (UJC) represents 155 Jewish federations and 400 smaller Jewish communities across North America. UJC- Washington brings the federations’ voice to Capitol Hill and to the White House by advocating for life-saving and life-enhancing humanitarian assistance through more than 1,300 social service and healthcare institutions, community centers, schools and summer camps in nearly 800 cities and towns in North America, in Israel and in 60 other countries around the world.
[Letter to Chairman Rangel and Ranking Member McCrery]
May 16, 2008
Dear Chairman Rangel and Ranking Member McCreary:
On behalf of United Jewish Communities, the national organization that represents and serves 155 Jewish federations, their affiliated Jewish community foundations and 400 independent Jewish communities in more than 800 cities and towns across North America, I am writing to express our strong support for the extension of the IRA charitable rollover provision included in H.R.6049, the Energy and Tax Extenders Act of 2008.
As you know, the Pension Protection Act in August 2006 enacted several charitable incentives designed to support important charitable works in communities throughout the country and the world. The IRA Charitable Rollover provision provides persons aged 70½ and older with the opportunity to contribute to charity out of their individual retirement accounts without suffering adverse tax consequences. Through this essential giving program, we have received in excess of $20 million from donors. These rollover contributions have become an essential funding source for our vital education, health, and social service programs.
We believe that restoration of the IRA Charitable Rollover incentive is an urgent matter that deserves the immediate attention of Congress. Adoption of H.R. 6049 would permit nonprofit organizations to raise resources that could be used throughout the year to provide or expand essential services to individuals and communities in need across the country. In addition, enactment now would provide sufficient time before the December 2008 sunset for potential donors to learn of the incentive and for charities to implement successful development strategies.
UJC commends your leadership to restore the IRA Charitable Rollover and other expired and expiring incentives and offers our support in securing the swift enactment of H.R. 6049 into law.
William C. Daroff Vice President for Public Policy & Director of the Washington Office