ELI Supports the Renewal of the Charitable Giving Deduction

The universal charitable deduction will expire at the end of 2021 unless Congress takes action to extend it. The EveryLibrary Institute has signed on to the Charitable Giving Coalition's letter to Congress asking that they take action now to extend the deduction.

Thousands of library Friends Groups and foundations are impacted by the structure of the charitable giving deduction. This incentive for individuals who take the standard deduction was created on a bipartisan basis in the early days of the pandemic to generate additional resources to support the work of charitable organizations. It was increased at the end of 2020 to the current level of $300 for individuals and $600 for couples but is set to expire on December 31, 2021.

We would encourage library support organizations and other library-aligned 501C3 organizations to review and sign the letter as well. We are urging Congressional leaders to support expanding and extending the universal charitable deduction in year-end legislation. Please spread the word with your networks.


[text of the letter]

Dear Majority Leader Schumer, Republican Leader McConnell, Speaker Nancy Pelosi, and Republican Leader McCarthy: 
On behalf of the Charitable Giving Coalition (CGC), a diverse group representing thousands of charitable and faith-based organizations across the country, we write to urge you to expand and extend the nonitemizer charitable deduction as thousands of nonprofits continue to play an integral role in the response to and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. 
Giving data since the enactment of the $300 universal charitable deduction in the bipartisan CARES Act and its extension in the 2020 year-end bill show an increase in both donations and donors. The Fundraising Effectiveness Project’s (FEP) fourth quarter report for 2020 showed a 15.3 percent uptick in donations of less than $250, which outpaced the increase in larger donations. Additionally, there was an estimated 28 percent increase in gifts of $300 on December 31 – the exact amount of the current universal charitable deduction. While we know there are many factors that contribute to increased donations, one contributing factor is likely the availability of the charitable deduction to nonitemizers. 
We continue to support the Universal Giving Pandemic Response and Recovery Act (S. 618, H.R. 1704), bipartisan legislation which would raise the $300/$600 cap on the nonitemizer charitable deduction to roughly $4,000 for individuals and $8,000 for couples. As the nation recovers, encouraging all American taxpayers—regardless of their income—to give more provides charities and faith-based organizations across the country with the critical resources needed to achieve their missions and support their communities and workforces. 
The nonitemizer charitable deduction is scheduled to expire at the end of this year, a lapse of which could create uncertainty among donors and reduce the pool of resources available to nonprofits that are providing critical services and support in every state and congressional district. We urge you to expand and extend the nonitemizer universal charitable deduction in year-end legislation. 
Thank you for your leadership and commitment to America’s charitable community.
Charitable Giving Coalition


Learn more about the EveryLibrary Institute's work supporting other organizations in the library ecosystem as well as the impact of our mutual aid program for COVID-affected library workers, the HALO project