Council of Nonprofits in the News

UPMC-Highmark fight spurs call for tax on some nonprofits

September 11, 2011

Municipalities risk long-term problems if, through taxes and other proposals, they reduce the resources of nonprofits, said David Thompson, vice president of public policy for the National Council of Nonprofits, in Washington, D.C. Tax-exempt organizations provide services that municipalities would have to fund otherwise, he said.

"Our view is, with the budget gap in the state or city right now, it would be worse without the nonprofits," Thompson said. He said taxing nonprofits "is an abrogation of the social compact between nonprofits and government."

Thompson said the efficacy of P.I.L.O.T. agreements depends on the circumstances. He said one area in which P.I.L.O.T. deals can be appropriate is when a nonprofit buys a large amount of land, eliminating what had been a source of revenue for a municipality.

"When a nonprofit is expanding, taking property off the tax rolls, that has an impact," Thompson said.

Hispanic attorney named new Girl Scouts CEO

August 25, 2011

Like most non-profits, the Girl Scouts organization has been affected by the battered economy, but has remained strong, says David Thompson, vice president of public policy for the National Council of Nonprofits. Girl Scouts is "a premiere name-brand non-profit that has gone through transition, transformation, reorganization and restructuring. It's led the non-profit community in that regard. It's done a great job of adjusting its mission to where there are girls in need of support and leadership training," he says.

How to Start a Nonprofit

August 11, 2011

Rather than spending several thousand dollars to hire a lawyer to incorporate your nonprofit, write its bylaws and file for 501(c)(3) federal status (so your donors can write off their donations), see if you can get pro bono help from your state’s bar association or a law school, or simply do it yourself. The book How to Form a Nonprofit Corporation by Anthony Mancuso will walk you through the steps of the 501 (c)(3) application process, as can your state association for nonprofits; go to the National Council of Nonprofits’ website to see whether there’s one in your state.

Manheim Township will tap nonprofits

July 17, 2011

Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit OrganizationsIn Harrisburg, after the state team that developed the recovery plan for the financially stressed city said Harrisburg should turn to nonprofits, the Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations and the National Council of Nonprofits in Washington, D.C., responded in a July 8 op-ed in the Harrisburg Patriot newspaper.

Hundreds of Maine Non-profits Lose Tax-Exempt Status

July 14, 2011

Maine Association of NonprofitsIndeed, the new annual filing requirement for smaller non-profits has been in the pipeline for some time. "Actually this is a fairly new development, if you call three years 'news'", says Jennifer Chandler of the National Council Of Nonprofits in Washington D.C.

Chandler says in 2006, Congress passed the Pension Protection Act, which included a provision aimed at providing more accurate data describing the number of active non-profits in the United States. Prior to the new law, non-profits with annual income of less than $25,000, did not have to file annual reports to the IRS. The new law began to require those smaller organizations to fill out a new form, the 990-N e-Postcard.

IRS Revokes Tax-Exempt Status of 33 Mt. Helix Nonprofits

July 12, 2011

Sara Koslow, manager of communications for the National Council of Nonprofits, said that the revocations will help “give us better data on the sector.”

“Many of these nonprofits are either defunct, have consolidated with a larger chapter or were created around an event that happened 30 years ago,” Koslow said. “There is no Chamber of Commerce for the nonprofit sector, so it’s hard to know how many are here and how many are there. This will only help improve the data and analytics of what’s actually out there.”

Long Road Back For Exemption-Revoked Groups

July 1, 2011

Nonprofits that hope to regain the tax-exempt status that was revoked last month better hunker down for the long haul. The review process by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to re-apply for tax-exempt status could take an average six to ninth months, even with the expedited process, according to the National Council of Nonprofits.

“While great care has been taken by the IRS to cull this list, the consequences of a loss of tax exemption are severe to the organization, the people who support it, and the community that benefits from its work,” said Tim Delaney, president and CEO of the Washington, D.C.-based National Council. “It is important that every person whose life is touched by a nonprofit organization – and that is just about everyone – check the revocation list to make sure his or her favorite charitable nonprofit isn’t on the list.”

More than 3,100 Ky. groups lose tax-exempt status

June 23, 2011

Kentucky Nonprofit Network"People who donate and don't look at the list don't discover it's not exempt," said David L. Thompson, vice president of public policy for the National Council of Nonprofits. 'We don't want the public to lose faith in nonprofits."

Danielle Clore, head of the Kentucky Nonprofit Network, said groups lost nonprofit status because they are now defunct, a change in leadership meant the paperwork did not arrive in the right hands or simple neglect.

"It could be any number of things," Clore said.

Thompson said in some cases, groups changed boards or addresses and sought nonprofit status after the changes were made.

"Either they didn't follow up or it's a duplicate listing," Thompson said.

Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit OrganizationsPatricia Mogan of the Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations said at least one group in that state learned it lost nonprofit status after the association received a grant to work with them and checked with the IRS. That group is reapplying, Mogan said.

Even though some groups will have to go through refilling for tax-exempt status, the trimmer list will be a benefit in the future, Clore and Thompson said.

"We're excited," Clore said. "It really helps us to better communicate."

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