Independent Sector submitted written testimony ahead of the Joint Economic Committee hearing on “Supporting Charitable Giving during the COVID-19 Crisis”, in favor of expanding the charitable deduction. The hearing is scheduled for today at 2:30 pm and will be presided by Chairman Mike Lee.
This hearing comes at a time when nonprofits and charities have stepped up to meet the unprecedented level of need in our country due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Even though they face many of the same economic challenges of other industries, nonprofits are straining to meet increasing demands in our communities on the frontlines, caring for the sick, feeding families, and keeping our communities connected.
As you may recall, Congress took a first step in addressing the loss of revenue and increased demand nonprofits face, through the CARES Act by enacting a $300 universal charitable deduction, to ensure that additional funding can flow into nonprofit organizations. Unfortunately, more needs to be done to ensure that nonprofits can provide critical services to all Americans in need.
This hearing is very timely to continue to build support for an expansion of the universal charitable deduction, as there is a bipartisan effort led by Senator James Lankford along with a group of bipartisan Senators including Mike Lee, Chris Coons, Jeanne Shaheen, Amy Klobuchar and Tim Scott that would expand the charitable incentive to non-itemizers to allow a deduction for up to a third of the current standard for contributions made in fiscal year 2020, which would allow single filers to claim up to $4,000, and for joint filers up to $8,000 in charitable contributions.