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Public Policy

“[P]olitics mixes with everything. It is a reality we all experience in different sorts of ways,
either as pernicious or benevolent.”

- Archbishop Desmond Tutu to AFP 2010 Int'l Conference, Baltimore MD

Public Policy News and Developments

As the largest association of philanthropic fundraisers, AFP seeks to educate the public about the fundraising profession and the importance of philanthropy, and protect the interests of donors, fundraisers and charities related to laws and regulations about giving, volunteering and nonprofit operations in the U.S., Canada, and abroad.

NEW Prime Minister Of Canada Recognizes National Volunteer Week
(Apr. 7, 2014) National Volunteer Week is April 6–12 this year, and Prime Minister Stephen Harper marked the occasion with comments about the importance of philanthropy and volunteering. Learn more.

AFP Statement on President Obama's 2015 Budget Proposal
(Mar. 5, 2014) In response to the White House's release of its Fiscal Year 2015 budget, AFP noted that capping the charitable deduction is not the way to position the U.S. for prolonged success in the 21st century.

Charities, Fundraisers Call New Tax Plan a “Mixed Bag”—Appreciate Simplification, Concerned About Impact on Giving
(Feb. 28, 2014) AFP circulated a press release in response to Rep. Dave Camp’s (R-MI), Chair of the House Ways and Means Committee, introduction of the Tax Reform Act of 2014. In addition, the Charitable Giving Coalition, Chaired by AFP, issued this statement

AFP Submits  Letter to Canada's Minister of Transport Regarding Proposed Stamp Rate Increases
(Feb. 14, 2014) AFP submitted this letter to Canada’s Minister of Transport urging the minister to exempt registered charities from the proposed Canada Post stamp rate increases.

Take Action!
Write to Your Member of Congress to Preserve Charitable Giving

AFP Advocacy

To better serve the interests and livelihood of AFP members and the philanthropic community, AFP works hard to continually advance and enhance its public policy outreach and advocacy efforts. We will be vigilant in highlighting new and pending legislative efforts in the U.S., Canada, and worldwide that could potentially impact the profession and charity, and what you can do to help safeguard the continuing vitality of philanthopy (including letter-writing campaigns, lobbying efforts, and more).

New! Canada Anti-Spam Legislation Talking Points in English and French
(Aug. 20, 2014) Canada’s new (and complicated) Anti-Spam Legislation, which came into force on July 1, applies to commercial electronic messages that are either sent from, or accessed on, a computer system in Canada. AFP urges you to contact members of Parliament and Senators to exempt electronic communications sent by, or on behalf of, registered charities, or at least provide clear and consistent interpretations for registered charities. To help in these efforts, we’ve armed you with talking points in English and French

The Long (and Continuing) Travels of the Charitable IRA Rollover
(June 3, 2014) The Charitable IRA Rollover was approved last week by the House Ways and Means Committee as part of a package of tax extenders, and is now headed to the full House for a vote. But the journey for the now expired provision is far from over. Using these bullet points, we urge you to contact your representatives to support the IRA Charitable Rollover.

AFP Public Awareness Communications Tool Kit Available for Canada Members
When is the best time to make a call to a government official? What is the role of a Minister of State? How do you gain the respect of a parliamentarian?  Find these answers and more in the new Public Awareness Communications tool kit, now available to all AFP Canada members.
Download English | Download French

AFP Chapter Advocacy FAQ Document Now Available!
With the guidance and input of the AFP U.S. Government Relations Committee, AFP has produced a one-page Chapter Advocacy FAQ document. Please distribute it to your chapter leaders and members. It is an invaluable tool for chapters to launch or enhance their advocacy and lobbying efforts.

AFP PAC
AFP’s public policy efforts are greatly enhanced by the Association of Fundraising Professionals Political Action Committee (AFP PAC).  The AFP PAC is the only political action committee that focuses on fundraising and charitable giving.  But the AFP PAC can only function with YOUR SUPPORT! AFP members who are U.S. citizens who wish to support the AFP PAC can learn more and make a contribution by clicking here (login required).

Canada Public Policy Issues

AFP's Response to National Post Article on Policing of Political Activities of Charities
(Sept. 8, 2014) Recently, Andrew Coyne penned this column in the National Post focused on the policing of political activities of charities. Coyne concluded that the best means of addressing the situation is to “take away the charitable tax designation—not selectively, based on their ability to dance on the head of a CRA pin, but across the board, outright.” The Association of Fundraising Professionals (AFP) finds this conclusion fundamentally flawed. The charitable tax designation and the tax credit represent a gesture of confidence on the part of the people by way of their elected representatives, an acknowledgement of the effectiveness of nonprofit and community action and a commitment to the longstanding tradition of philanthropy in Canada.

Taxes: Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) Reporting Options
(Aug. 13, 2014) There are a number of different options available to Canadian organizations when reporting on HST. From nonprofits to charities, Sarah Curry, CPA, CA identifies specific criteria that must be met in order to follow the best reporting method.

Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL)
(June 24, 2014) On July 1, 2014, Canada’s Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL) will take effect, applying to commercial electronic messages (“CEM”) that are either sent from, or accessed on, a computer system in Canada, unless an exemption applies. Mark Blumberg, a partner at Blumberg Segal LLP and Non-Profit, drafted a document to help explain what the CASL will mean for Canada charities.

U.S. Public Policy Issues

Big Vote in the House on Thursday for IRA Rollover, Other Charitable Provisions
(July 15, 2014) The House of Representatives is expected to vote this Thursday legislation that would make the currently expired IRA Rollover provision permanent. AFP is encouraging members to contact their Congressperson TODAY!

The Long (and Continuing) Travels of the Charitable IRA Rollover
(June 3, 2014) The Charitable IRA Rollover was approved last week by the House Ways and Means Committee as part of a package of tax extenders, and is now headed to the full House for a vote. But the journey for the now expired provision is far from over. Using these bullet points, we urge you to contact your representatives to support the IRA Charitable Rollover.

IRA Rollover Provision Included in Senate’s EXPIRE Act
(Apr. 23, 2014) The IRA Charitable Rollover provision, which allows donors age 70½ and older to exclude from their taxable income any IRA funds up to $100,000 that have been withdrawn and transferred to a charity when filing a tax return, is one step closer to being reinstated back into law. Find out how you can help Congress approve the provision!

International News and Information

Position Paper: Face-to-Face Fundraising Guidelines (Canada)
These guidelines represent voluntary principles that apply to charitable organizations, non-governmental organizations, paid fundraisers and relevant third parties who utilize face-to-face fundraising as part of their fundraising activities.

Public Policy Update Newsletter

Emailed to subscribers twice a year, the AFP Public Policy Update newsletter brings you the latest legislative and political developments affecting the fundraising and philanthropic communties.

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