We support SB 18-141, sponsored by Sen. Lois Court (D-Denver) and Rep. James Wilson (R-Salida)!
141 would create a new line on the tax form for 2020 called the "Donate to a Colorado Nonprofit Fund," which allows Colorado taxpayers to donate part or all of their tax refund to any nonprofit registered in Colorado for at least five years. All the taxpayer would need to do is write or type in the amount of the donation and identify which nonprofit will receive the donation.
The Donate to a Colorado Nonprofit Fund provides donors with the opportunity to give to any registered nonprofit at a time when they have additional income. It encourages donors to give during tax season in addition to year-end giving. To be eligible, the nonprofit must be registered with the Colorado Secretary of State for charitable solicitations for at least five years and in good standing.
Why This Bill Matters
Last year, Coloradans received over $1 billion in income tax refunds. They donated almost a quarter of a percent of their refunds ($1.9 million) to the 20 tax checkoffs on the form. If they donated as much as 5% of the amount of their income tax refunds, nonprofits would receive an additional $50 million in charitable giving to strengthen our communities.
Giving Coloradans the choice of donating their tax refunds to any registered nonprofit will encourage them to give more and support a wider range of organizations If 141 passes, taxpayers could still choose to donate their tax refunds to any other checkoff fund on the form. Nor does it affect the renewal of existing tax checkoffs or establishment of new ones.
In 1977, Colorado became the first state to allow taxpayers to donate to nonprofits and charitable causes via the state tax return. By adopting SB 18-141, Colorado would become the first state to allow taxpayers to write-in the nonprofit of their choice when they donate their tax refunds via the state tax return.
How Will it Work?
- Nonprofits will complete their annual charitable solicitations report with the Colorado Secretary of State, so they remain registered for five years and in good standing
- On the Voluntary Contributions Schedule on the Colorado Tax Return, taxpayers will see a line for the Donate to a Colorado Nonprofit Fund
- Taxpayers can write or type in the amount of their refund donation and identify which nonprofit will receive the donation
- Taxpayers can make their entire refund donation to this fund or donate various amounts to this fund and other tax checkoffs
- The Department of Revenue (DOR) will direct payment of the donation from the Treasurer to the recipient nonprofit organization.
- Gifts grants and donations willl pay for implementation of the program. DOR may deduct reasonable fees from donations to pay for ongoing administrative costs.