I received an e-mail from Rob Pierson, a Democratic Congressional staffer in Washington, D.C., asking if I would get the word out on tax benefits for Haiti donations. I said yes, so here it is (indented and in green font):
January 20, 2010
Americans who make charitable contributions to aid earthquake victims in Haiti will be able to claim donations as an itemized deduction on their 2009 tax return (rather than waiting to claim it on their 2010 return), according to legislation that passed the House earlier today.
Charles Rangel—Chairman of the Ways and Means Committee and the bill’s sponsor— and [Majority] Whip Jim Clyburn worked with Ranking Member Dave Camp, and Minority Whip Eric Cantor to make it easier for Americans to donate to the relief efforts in Haiti.
“We all witnessed the horrendous event that took place in our hemisphere last week and have united in a bipartisan way to do what we can to ease the pain of those who are suffering in Haiti,” said Congressman Rangel.
In addition to passing this measure, the House of Representatives will vote later this week to pass a resolution expressing condolences to, and solidarity with, the people of Haiti.
In January of 2005, Congress enacted similar tax provisions for individuals that made charitable contributions to victims of the Indian Ocean tsunami that occurred in late December of 2004. That bill passed the House of Representatives without objection and subsequently passed the Senate by unanimous consent.
How terrible it must have been to be trapped and unable to escape, then to die hours or days later. And how terrible it must be to be a survivor who grieves.
Stories are emerging how crooks and thieves are posing as agents of various relief agencies, defrauding donors. If you make a Haiti donation, please make every effort to insure that your donation has gone to a legitimate agency.
The motivation for this program seems to be above board. Thanks for asking, Rob.
Director of New Media
House Democratic Caucus
Debit and credit – – David Albrecht