OU Responds to Maryland Governor’s Budget on Charities

27 Jan 2012


Today, the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, the nation’s largest Orthodox Jewish umbrella organization, expressed deep concerns about an aspect of Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley’s executive budget proposal, recently released, which, the Orthodox Union says, will harm charities throughout Maryland.

Following in the footsteps of a proposal President Obama has made, but has been rejected by Congress, Governor O’Malley proposes reducing the rate of tax deductibility for contributions to charity on a donor’s state taxes.

The Governor proposes that Marylanders earning more than $100,000 will have their charitable deduction rate reduced by 10 percent, those earning more than $200,000 will have their charitable deduction rate reduced by 20 percent.

In response to Governor O’Malley’s proposal, Nathan Diament, Executive Director of Public Policy for the Orthodox Union, stated:

“The Orthodox Union, like so many in Maryland’s nonprofit sector, is deeply concerned over Governor O’Malley’s budget proposal to reduce the rate of deductibility for charitable contributions. The tax deductibility of charitable contributions is, apart from a person’s generosity of spirit, a powerful tool Maryland’s many charities possess to raise funds that enable them to serve their brothers and sisters.

Even in good economic times, a proposal such as the one put forth in the Governor’s budget would adversely affect charities. In these distressed times, in which charities are serving more people’s needs while at the same time already suffering a dramatic downturn in donations, the proposal to reduce the rate of tax deductibility for contributions is a recipe for displacements and cuts in much-needed non-profit sector institutions and services.”

Orthodox Union Director of Political Affairs Maury Litwack further stated: “Maryland’s charitable sector is crucial to the thousands of people they serve in the state, but also crucial to Maryland’s economy overall. In recent years, Maryland’s non-profits employed 10 percent of the state’s workforce paying more than $11 billion in wages. The Governor’s proposal will adversely impact Maryland’s charities and potentially the state’s employment picture overall.”

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