New York Tax Law Could Result in Fewer Charitable Donations

Chronicle of Philanthropy

N.Y. Governor Sings Into Law Limits on Charitable Deductions

"New York Gov. David A. Paterson has signed into law a revenue bill passed by the state’s legislature that limits charitable deductions for “high earners”—a move that has nonprofits and a prominent New York philanthropist worried about a related significant loss in contributions to charity.

The law puts new limits on tax deductions for people with state-adjusted gross income above $10-million annually—about 3,500 taxpayers in New York. Those residents are now able to write off only 25 percent of their charitable contributions on their state income taxes rather than the previous 50 percent.

The provision in the budget plan runs for three years, including the current 2010 tax year.

The charitable-deduction pro­vision could provide up to $100-million in revenue during the current fiscal year for the state, which has had a budget crisis and has sought additional funds. But nonprofit organizations and donors think the change will lead many wealthy people to give less money to charity.

'Charities have been hit from every side in the last three years, including seeing decreases in public funds,' said Abigail E. Disney, a New York philanthropist and film maker. [...]

Read the full column by Grant Williams in The Chronicle of Philanthropy.

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