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The Charitable Deduction: A View from the Other Side of the Cliff

As the vehicle of state leaned over one fiscal cliff, Congress pulled it back but kept the motor running. In this session, we will examine the recent debate over tax changes, the resulting effect on charities, and the likely forthcoming debate in early 2013. Panelists will discuss how federal fiscal policy and proposed changes to tax law, in particular the charitable deduction, may affect charitable giving and the political scene for nonprofits going forward into an uncertain future.


11:45-12:00 Lunch

12:00-1:10: Looking Back at the Cliff
This panel will take a look back at the debate leading up to the “fiscal cliff.” The panelists will discuss the various proposals that would have affected the charitable deduction, the response of the nonprofit sector, and the effect of the ultimate deal that was reached.

Moderator: Eugene Steuerle, Urban Institute
Diana Aviv, Independent Sector
Jon Bakija, Williams College, Slides
Rick Cohen, Nonprofit Quarterly
Joseph Rosenberg, Urban-Brookings Tax Policy Center, Slides

1:10-1:20: Break

1:20-2:30: The Road Forward
This panel will discuss what lies ahead for the charitable deduction in an environment of continued budget pressure. The speakers will describe various proposed reforms to the charitable deduction and discuss how these reforms may affect nonprofits, for better or for worse.

Moderator: Elizabeth Boris, Urban Institute
Joseph Cordes, George Washington University, Slides
Tim Delaney, National Council of Nonprofits
Brian Flahaven, Council for Advancement and Support of Education
Jane Gravelle, Congressional Research Service, Slides


Speaker Biographies

Date & Time Thursday, February 28, 2013

  • Institute Fellow and Richard B. Fisher Chair
  • Institute Fellow