Advocacy Alert: Nov. 29

Senate Tax Reform Legislation Moves Forward

Congress continues to move at a breakneck pace in its effort to pass comprehensive tax reform legislation in 2017. After the U.S. House of Representatives passed its bill earlier this month, the U.S. Senate could vote on its version as soon as tomorrow. The Alliance has been tracking these proposals as they evolve, and has prepared an updated side-by-side comparison of some issues that could impact museums.

Protect Charitable Giving; Call Your Senators TODAY

Like the House bill, the Senate preserves the charitable deduction but makes other changes to the tax code that would effectively eliminate this tax incentive to donate for 30 million Americans. Research conducted by the Lilly Family School of Philanthropy at Indiana University shows that similar proposals could eliminate up to $13 billion in annual donations to museums and other nonprofits.

The Senate could vote as soon as tomorrow, so please call your Senators today: 

  1. Use the Alliance's tools to look up your U.S. Senators.
  2. Call the U.S. Capitol switchboard at (202) 224-3121 and ask to speak with each of your Senators' offices.
  3. Urge them to add a universal charitable deduction to the Senate tax legislation.

You could say something like:

"Hi, I'm a constituent calling from [your city/state]. I'm opposed to the Senate tax bill as currently written, because it would cause charitable donations to decline by billions of dollars every year. I'd like to urge you to add a universal charitable deduction to the legislation, so that every taxpayer is encouraged to support museums and other charities--regardless of whether they itemize their tax return."

If you have a relationship with particular congressional staff, it is even more powerful to reach out to them directly.

See the Alliance's issue brief on charitable giving for more information, and please don't hesitate to contact us with questions.

P.S. Do you wish you could do more to support these critical advocacy efforts? Register now for Museums Advocacy Day 2018 (February 26-27 in Washington, D.C.), and take advantage of a unique opportunity to build relationships with legislators and staff and hone your advocacy skills.