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Clinton Announces Revisions to Tax Regulations to Support Civil Society Worldwide

September 24, 2012

Small but interesting announcement timed to coincide with the annual meeting of the Clinton Global Initiative and the opening of the 67th session of the UN general assembly:

In conjunction with a meeting of the State Department's new Global Philanthropy Working Group -- the sixth and newest pillar of the department's Strategic Dialogue with Civil Society initiative -- Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton has announced Treasury Department and IRS guidance "aimed at lowering the legal barriers and administrative costs associated with cross-border philanthropy in support of civil society worldwide."

According to a statement issued by State, the proposed revisions to "equivalency determinations" -- i.e., the process by which a U.S. grantmaker evaluates whether an intended foreign grantee is the equivalent of a U.S. public charity -- allows foundations to rely on a broader range of professional tax advisors when making such determinations. It's hoped that "this will make professional tax advice in this area easier to obtain, significantly reduce the administrative costs of foundation grantmaking to foreign civil society groups, and ensure that accurate determinations regarding foreign grantees are made."

For the last year or so, Tech Soup Global, in partnership with the Council on Foundations, has been working on an equivalency determination information repository (EDIR) service called NGOsource. To learn more, click here.


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