FOTH Report Round Up

The Maine delgation led by Janet Henry of Maine Philanthropy Center meets with Senator Susan Collins.

The Maine delegation led by Janet Henry of Maine Philanthropy Center meets with Senator Susan Collins.

Several regional associations have reported on their successful Hill meetings at this year’s Foundations on the Hill. Here’s a quick round up of what happened in DC and how regionals are taking the conversation forward.

Sherry Ristau, president and CEO of Southwest Initiative Foundation, shared her experience at Foundations on the Hill with Minnesota Council on Foundations’ Philanthropy Potluck blog:

As I learned more about proposed policy changes, it became clear that there certainly could be big changes—and that the charitable deduction benefit is in jeopardy. As I visited one-to-one with key Congressional offices, it is clear we could lose this important incentive encouraging Americans to give. I am truly afraid of the unintended consequences of how our government is looking at the charitable deduction.

Meanwhile Adam Donaldson, Members Services Director at the Association of Baltimore Area Grantmakers had this to say about what legislators need from the philanthropic sector:

ABAG met this week with the offices of Senators Ben Cardin (D-MD) and Barbara Mikulski (D-MD) and Representatives Elijah Cummings (D-MD) and John Sarbanes (D-MD) to inform them of current policy debates surrounding the charitable deduction and examples of our members’ impact through funder collaborations. Each office asked for the same thing. More input. They encouraged grantmakers to provide commentary on policy proposals, explaining how current projects underway in Maryland could be affected.

Finally Mindie Reule, Program Manager for Public Policy at Philanthropy Northwest, strikes an upbeat note and gives us a heads up for what’s coming up on Congress’s agenda:

… we heard general support for our sector from both Republicans and Democrats, and recognition of the importance of philanthropy and nonprofits to our communities and civil society. We also know that members of Congress and their staff on both the House and Senate are working on tax reform this year—and tax policy that affects foundations and nonprofits has and will be part of those conversations.


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