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Tax relief for Haitian help

Published (3/11/2010)
By Lee Ann Schutz
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People donating financially to organizations providing earthquake relief in Haiti can choose to claim the charitable contribution on their 2009 itemized federal tax return, rather than the 2010 return. The same accelerated deduction is now available on state income tax returns.

Sponsored by Rep. Ann Lenczewski (DFL-Bloomington) and Sen. Tom Bakk (DFL-Cook), the state provision was signed into law March 9 by Gov. Tim Pawlenty. It is effective the next day.

The federal special tax relief provision was enacted Jan. 22, to make deductible monetary contributions to qualifying charitable organizations that are assisting with relief efforts in Haiti following the Jan. 12 earthquake.

Only cash contributions made to qualifying charities between Jan. 12, 2010, and Feb. 28, 2010, are eligible for the federal deduction, according to Internal Revenue Service regulations. This includes contributions made by text message, check, credit card or debit card.

The expected net cost to the state for the credit is approximately $10,000.

HF2763/ SF2352*/CH187

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