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ACR Blog: (VIDEO) The Effects of a 100 Percent Charitable Deduction

In the August 22 edition of the ACR newsletter, we shared a story about Puerto Rico adopting a 100 percent charitable deduction in 2011. The deduction led to a 70 percent increase in the number of individuals who made charitable donations in Puerto Rico, according to a report released by the Flamboyan Foundation.

The Flamboyan Foundation is a private, family foundation focused on improving educational outcomes for children in public schools in Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico, according to its website. The Alliance for Charitable Reform recently interviewed Kristin Ehrgood, president of the Flamboyan Foundation, about the implementation of the tax deduction, the results of the Flamboyan Foundation’s study, and how studying donor behavior could help expand charitable giving in Puerto Rico.

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Philanthropic Achievement of the Week

1997- Olin College of Engineering

College of Engineering

Franklin Olin didn’t finish school, but he was mechanically gifted and studied on his own so that at age 22 he passed the entrance exam for Cornell University, where he studied engineering. He proved to be a natural entrepreneur, and when Olin died in 1951 his bequest made his foundation one of the largest in the nation. For years, the F. W. Olin Foundation supported science and engineering projects; then the trustees decided to create a brand-new college to offer students Franklin-Olin-style twists on engineering. The Olin College of Engineering, chartered in Needham, Massachusetts, in 1997, particularly aimed to make its engineers more creative, more entrepreneurial, more interdisciplinary and comfortable working in teams, and equipped with better communications skills. All of these elements were lacking in traditional engineering training.

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Federal | State | Proper Oversight

Opinion: Dark Money

In an editorial published Wednesday by National Review Online, Bill Zeiser, a Ph.D. student at Hillsdale College, takes on the task of explaining the critical role of anonymous giving to philanthropic privacy. Zeiser cites an article authored by Adam Meyerson, president of The Philanthropy Roundtable, about the misconceptions surrounding so-called ‘dark money,’ the role anonymous donations play in upholding freedom of association, and the necessity of protecting a charitable donor’s identity in a thriving civil society.

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ACR Blog: The 2014 Philanthropy Roundtable Annual Meeting

The Philanthropy Roundtable Annual Meeting is quickly approaching. On October 9 and 10 we’ll be in Salt Lake City, Utah to explore meaningful and effective giving that solves our nation’s greatest problems.

Click below for a five minute video interview with Lindsay Miller, our managing director of events, discussing what’s in store.


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Philanthropic Achievement of the Week

1937- The Guggenheim


Solomon Guggenheim was born into a wealthy mining family, and expanded his fortune through his own mining ventures. He turned to philanthropy full time after the First World War. The Solomon R. Guggenheim Foundation was launched in 1937 “to promote the understanding and appreciation of art, architecture, and other manifestations of visual culture, primarily of the modern and contemporary periods, and to collect, conserve, and study the art of our time.” It opened its first museum in 1939, showcasing samples of Guggenheim’s unusual collection. The foundation consistently promoted Solomon’s interest in the current, the abstract, and the unusual, even in its buildings.

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CGC Thanks Ryan in Letter for Comments Supporting Charitable Deduction

Coalition Also Expresses Concern Over Floor, AGI Limitation, Evaluation

The Charitable Giving Coalition sent a letter to House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) today thanking him for his comments supporting the value of the charitable deduction. Ryan has voiced support in recent interviews for avoiding a cap on the charitable deduction.

The coalition also reiterated concerns in the letter over proposed provisions in House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Dave Camp’s (R-MI) Tax Reform Act of 2014 that would implement a two percent floor on the charitable deduction, streamline adjusted gross income limitations, and require gifts of property to be evaluated according to basis instead of fair market value.

Click here to read the full letter.

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ACR News 09.19.14—Congress Returns, Camp Plan Effect on Charitable Giving

>> Federal: Washington Roundup
>> Federal: Tax Extenders Delayed
>> Federal: Urban Institute Releases Report
>> Federal: Consider This
>> Top Reads: Study finds Camp’s tax reform would reduce charitable giving

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ACR Blog: Constitution Day

Members of the Constitutional Convention officially adopted the Constitution as our nation’s supreme law on this day in 1787. As such, September 17 has officially been designated as a day of observance to commemorate this pivotal moment in American history.

The Constitution has endured for nearly 230 years and preserves the rights the citizens of our country hold dear. They are the very rights that have helped establish a vibrant and generous tradition of American philanthropy. In the Fall 2013 issue of Philanthropy magazine, Adam Meyerson, president of The Philanthropy Roundtable, wrote about the Constitutionally-guaranteed freedom of association and the critical role of anonymous giving in a thriving civil society. To commemorate Constitution Day, we re-publish Meyerson’s letter as a reminder of the importance of philanthropic freedom.

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Philanthropic Achievement of the Week

2012- Rolling Restoration of Smithsonian’s Natural History Museum


The Smithsonian Institution was a product of philanthropy (a bequest from James Smithson), and about 30 percent of its budget continues to come from private donations (which play a particularly large role in expansions and new initiatives). A major refresh of its National Museum of Natural History began in the late 1990s, sparking the largest gift to the museum to that point from Ken Behring, who rose from harsh poverty to riches by selling cars and then developing real estate. He donated $20 million to spearhead a massive renovation of Natural History’s ground floor, resulting in, among other things, a new Hall of Mammals which opened in 2003. (Behring later donated $80 million to revitalize the National Museum of American History, making him the Smithsonian’s largest private donor.)

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Honoring the Families of the Victims of September 11

Courtesy: 9/

Today we reflect upon the events that shook our nation 13 years ago and honor the fallen. With that in mind, we share an article from the New York Times about the Families of Freedom Scholarship Fund, which provides full scholarships to family members of the victims of the September 11 attacks.

“The organization initially enlisted President Bill Clinton and Senator Bob Dole to raise more than $100 million so that children with so much on their minds would not have to worry about money for college. In a fitting coincidence, the last $4.8 million of those initial contributions will be handed out this fall semester,” wrote the New York Times.

Click here to read the full article.

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