See how Independent Sector and our allies urged Congress to reinstate tax extenders:
Read the Nov. 2014 letter to Congress spearheaded by IS and signed by over 1,000 nonprofit partners
A number of critical giving incentives that are often included as part of the annual "tax extenders" package expired for the fourth time in recent years at the start of 2014, but were reinstated for the 2014 tax year on December 19, 2014. The package of extenders expired again on January 1, 2015. By repeatedly allowing these provisions to lapse, Congress has impacted their effectiveness and created donor uncertainty.
Charitable giving incentives include:
Permanent tax extenders, including charitable giving incentives, become law
Following passage by Congress of a tax bill including 22 permanent tax breaks, including the three charitable giving incentives, President Obama signed the measure into law on December 18, 2015. The measure also includes a two-year delay in implementation for the so-called “Cadillac tax.” The giving incentives restored and made permanent are the IRA charitable rollover and enhanced deductions for donations of food inventory and conservation easements. Independent Sector with partners had urged Congress to address the measures as soon as possible to restore much needed certainty to the tax code.
Independent Sector and 19 other nonprofits urge immediate Congressional action on charitable giving incentives
Independent Sector and the Council on Foundations, supported by 18 other leading philanthropic and charitable organizations, sent a letter on October 21, 2015 calling for swift legislative action, urging Congress to take immediate steps to make permanent the three currently expired charitable giving incentives that are part of the tax extenders package. Collectively representing tens of thousands of charities and foundations across the charitable sector, these organizations reiterated that that without incentives permanently reinstated, “many of the donations the incentives were intended to promote will simply not take place.”
Independent Sector joins national coalition of over 2,000 urging Congress to act
Independent Sector, along with a broad national coalition of over 2,000 businesses, associations, and other charitable organizations recently signed onto a joint letter to Congress asking that they restore seamlessly the expired tax provisions, and make permanent those for charitable giving. IS continues to fight for permanent extension of these giving incentives, and thanks all those who answered our call to add their name to this letter, as we partner with a diverse range of industries to urge Congress to take decisive action.
Senate Finance approves expired giving incentives
The Senate Finance Committee approved legislation (S. 1946) on July 21, 2015 that would reinstate for the 2015 and 2016 tax years a package of expired tax provisions, which includes the IRA charitable rollover, the enhanced deduction for land conservation easement donations, and the enhanced deduction for food inventory donations.
Charitable tax provisions pass House
On February 12, 2015 the House passed the America Gives More Act (H.R. 644), with a veto-proof majority vote of 279 to 139. The legislation packages together bills to extend permanently the IRA charitable rollover (H.R. 637), the enhanced and expanded deduction for donating excess food inventory (H.R. 644), and the enhanced deduction for land conservation easements (H.R. 641). Also included is a bill (H.R. 640) that would simplify to 1 percent the excise tax rate on private foundations’ investment income.
IS POSITION AND ACTION
Because the IRA rollover and other incentives have come under close scrutiny, Independent Sector is working closely with our members and will support coalitions to make the case for bringing greater certainty to these powerful giving tools.
The set of 55 tax provisions that regularly expire and are reinstated are known collectively as "tax extenders." The package includes three charitable giving incentives: the IRA charitable rollover, the enhanced charitable deduction for food inventory, and the enhanced charitable deduction for land conservation.
After these measures expired at the end of 2011, the American Taxpayer Relief Act of 2012 (ATRA) extended through 2013 and retroactively through 2012 all three of the charitable tax extenders, as well as the basis adjustment to stock of S corporations making charitable contributions of property. The package did not include previously available extenders that offered enhanced deductions for books and computer equipment.
In 2013, some lawmakers in the House signaled a preference to defer to former Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp's (R-MI) comprehensive tax reform efforts for renewal of their preferred extenders. A lack of legislative action in 2013, however, allowed all extenders to expire on January 1, 2014.
In 2014, lawmakers in both chambers advanced legislation to make permanent only certain tax extenders and extend others only temporarily. The Senate Finance Committee passed by voice vote in April the EXPIRE Act (S.2260), which would have renewed through 2015 the entire extenders package. The bill, however, failed to reach the Senate floor due to partisan disagreement over the amendment process. In July, the House passed the America Gives More Act (H.R. 4719), which would have restored permanently three charitable extenders as well as extended through April 15 the deadline for claiming charitable donations on the previous year's tax filing and simplified to 1 percent the excise tax rate for private foundations' investment income. The Senate did not take up the bill. In December, the House was unsuccessful in passing under suspension of the rules narrower legislation, the Supporting America's Charities Act (H.R. 5806), which would have made permanent only the three charitable extenders.
Unable to reach a longer-term agreement on extenders, the lame duck 113th Congress adopted legislation (H.R.5771) in December 2014 to extend the package of expired provisions, including three charitable giving incentives, retroactively for just the 2014 tax year. The provisions were set to expire again in two-weeks' time, on January 1, 2015.