Advocacy Alert – December 20, 2021
In this Alliance Advocacy Alert:
- Take Action: Urge Your Representative to Provide Nonprofit ERTC Relief Now! Co-sponsor H.R. 6161
- News You Can Use: Charitable Giving Incentives
- Upcoming Webinar: Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF)
- NEA Chair Confirmed: Senate confirms Dr. Maria Rosario Jackson as the 13th chair of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA)
- Register Today: Participate in Museums Advocacy Day 2022 Virtually
With a Continuing Resolution (CR) keeping the Federal government funded at last year’s levels until February 18 and legislation passed increasing the debt limit to avoid default, Congress adjourned for the year. The Senate will not be able to wrap up its remaining major priorities before December 31, including the reconciliation bill known as “Build Back Better” and voting rights legislation. Any unfinished business will be revisited beginning in January. Looking ahead, Congress may consider another COVID-19 relief bill, depending on the severity of the impact of the Omicron variant. In this final Alliance Advocacy Alert of 2021, get all the information you need to know before the year wraps up.
Take Action: Urge Your Representative to Provide Nonprofit ERTC Relief Now! Co-sponsor H.R. 6161
The Build Back Better bill currently does not include reinstatement of the Employee Retention Tax Credit, a high priority of the charitable nonprofit community, including museums, and a benefit that was eliminated for the fourth quarter of 2021 by the bipartisan infrastructure bill signed into law on November 11. (On December 6, 2021 the IRS issued Notice 2021-65, clarifying that employers are not entitled to the ERTC for wages paid on or after October 1, 2021.) Many museums have been counting on the refundable payroll tax credit of up to $7,000 per employee this quarter to afford to retain staff and avoid additional layoffs. Representatives introduced the Employee Retention Tax Credit Reinstatement Act (H.R. 6161), which has been endorsed by the Alliance, to restore this important incentive.
Before you turn off your computer for the holidays, please take a minute to use our template to contact your Representative and urge them to cosponsor H.R. 6161 to restore this important refundable payroll tax credit. Learn more about the issue here.
News You Can Use: Charitable Giving Incentives
As a member of the Charitable Giving Coalition, the Alliance is Urging Lawmakers to Expand and Extend Universal Charitable Deduction Before Year End although prospects for a major tax package are remote. See CGC Letter to Senate and House Leaders, Dec. 14, 2021; PDF of the letter.
Regardless of its extension and expansion, the IRS is promoting the use of the current Universal Charitable Deduction before it expires December 31. The following information may be helpful with your museum’s year end fundraising:
- IRS joins leading nonprofit groups to highlight special charitable tax benefit available through Dec. 31, Internal Revenue Service, Dec. 13, 2021. Special rule helps most people get a deduction of up to $300 per individual, $600 for couples for gifts to charity; National Council of Nonprofits and Independent Sector highlight how donations can help the nation’s charitable community. (The Alliance is a dues paying member of the National Council of Nonprofits and Independent Sector.)
- Get a closer look at why the IRS is encouraging taxpayers to make charitable contributions by December 31, 2021, Sunita Lough, Commissioner, Tax Exempt and Government Entities Division, IRS, Dec. 13, 2021: “I want to remind people and businesses of the potential deductions available for eligible individual and business charitable donations as a result of the Taxpayer Certainty and Disaster Tax Relief Act of 2020 and the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act. It’s important to understand special changes in law impacting charitable contributions and deductions remain in effect until Dec. 31, 2021.”
Upcoming Webinar: Public Service Loan Forgiveness (PSLF)
The Alliance is a member of the PSLF Coalition. To learn about updates to the PSLF program and how those updates can apply to you, join Equal Justice Works and the PSLF Coalition for a webinar Wednesday, January 5 from 12-1 pm ET. Register here. A recording of a previous December 1 webinar is available here.
NEA Chair Confirmed
The U.S. Senate voted December 18 to confirm Dr. Maria Rosario Jackson as the 13th chair of the National Endowment for the Arts (NEA). Jackson, a national leader in integrating arts and culture into community development, is the first African American and Mexican American to lead the NEA. President Biden has also nominated Shelly Lowe, a citizen of the Navajo Nation, to lead the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). If confirmed, Lowe would be the first Native American to lead the NEH.
Happy Holidays! Thank you for your steadfast advocacy. We look forward to working with you in the new year to advance museums as essential community infrastructure.
Register Today to Participate in Museums Advocacy Day 2022 Virtually
Registration is now open for Museums Advocacy Day 2022, taking place virtually on February 28-March 1! Updates this year help you customize your Museums Advocacy Day experience. Learn more about the 2022 registration options and see the schedule at a glance and FAQ.
Museums Advocacy Day is a unique opportunity to unite with museum colleagues and supporters from across the country as one voice to reaffirm our essential value, collective contributions, and aspirations while making the critical case for museums directly to Congress. Together, our advocacy efforts have protected IMLS, NEA, and NEH from severe cuts and even repeated threats of elimination and spurred action resulting in billions of dollars in financial relief that enabled many museums to survive and saved thousands of museum jobs. In 2022, we must keep making the case for museums.
Join us for this invaluable opportunity to further this critical work for our field while honing your own advocacy skills. We hope to see you online in February!
Visit www.aam-us.org/advocacy to access all of AAM’s advocacy resources.