Tuesday, October 10, 2017

On September 27, the “Big 6” (4 Republican leaders in Congress and 2 key administrative officials) released the latest plan for advancing tax reform. This 9-page framework continues calls for preserving the charitable tax deduction, a key provision and an important inclusion.

The framework, however, also proposes to double the standard deduction. The doubling of the standard deduction would have the impact of moving taxpayers away from itemizing their deductions (like charitable giving). It is anticipated that charities could lose up to $13 billion in donations each year under this scenario.

As a solution, Americans for the Arts has joined a large and diverse coalition of non-profits in support of a universal charitable tax deduction (#giving100) that could be made available to all taxpayers. On October 5, Rep. Mark Walker (R-NC) introduced legislation to allow such a charitable deduction for taxpayers who don’t itemize, the Universal Charitable Giving Act (H.R. 3988). This legislation is an important development and could help ensure that any tax reform continues to support long-established policy that encourages more giving by more Americans. Read the Arts Advocacy Day issue brief to learn more on how tax reform could impact charitable giving and donations of artwork, like the Artist-Museum Partnership Act (H.R. 1830/ S.1174) that Americans for the Arts has been working on for over a decade.

Americans for the Arts is a member of Independent Sector and the Charitable Giving Coalition, who are working to ensure the protection of the full scope and value of the charitable tax deduction. U.S. House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) has announced a goal to work to enact tax reform by year-end.