For several weeks we have been keeping our advocates informed of key concerns with the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act as passed in the House and Senate. Thank you to those who have taken action and have raised these issues with lawmakers. With your help, nearly 500 emails have been sent to Members of Congress in addition to a significant number of phone calls, tweets, and Facebook messages.
The conference committee which was created to work out the differences between the two bills, is held its first (and likely only) public meeting on December 13. Two hours prior to the meeting, the media reported that GOP leaders had reached a deal. During the meeting, each of the 22 members of the conference committee were permitted to give a three minute statement. The committee then received a review of the differences between the House and Senate bills presented by staff of the Joint Committee on Taxation.
The final bill may go to the floor of the House or Senate as soon as Monday, December 18. Requests to delay the vote until after Senator-elect Doug Jones (D-AL) are said to be denied.
Before the final vote, we need your help to raise concerns with the provisions that could be harmful to the nonprofit sector including:
- Limiting the charitable giving deduction to those who itemize. By not expanding the deduction to all taxpayers, charitable giving could decrease by up to $13 billion per year as more individuals will take the standard deduction and under the law as written would not be eligible to take a deduction.
- Efforts to allow charitable nonprofits to engage in political activity by repealing the Johnson Amendment. This move would jeopardize charitable giving and undermine the public trust in charitable organizations, ultimately doing more harm than good.
- Limits on access to capital that are important for nonprofit expansions. The House bill restricts or eliminates financing vehicles available to nonprofits including the New Market Tax Credit and tax-exempt bonds. If these provisions pass, capital will be more expensive and more difficult to access, thus putting more strain on charitable nonprofits and impacting their delivery of mission services.
Please click here and contact your lawmakers today. The final bill expected to be voted on next week has not been released. Should any of the above concerns be addressed in the final text of the compromise bill, the alert will be updated accordingly.
Following the tax vote, Congress will turn their attention to funding the federal government which is currently operating under a short-term continuing resolution through Friday, December 22nd.