[Noisebridge-discuss] 2010 taxes

Ryan Castellucci ryan.castellucci at gmail.com
Thu Jan 13 21:39:40 PST 2011


I don't think that it's necessary to hack dues like that, but it will
unambiguously resolve the problem.

On Thu, Jan 13, 2011 at 9:35 PM, Ryan Rawson <ryanobjc at gmail.com> wrote:
> Should not be necessary.... Sine there is no actual monetary benefit
> to paying dues (other than the good feeling of helping nb) the entire
> amount is tax deductible.  As per your previous email I don't see the
> need to make this "$1 vs $79" thing.
>
> Also note that in California, state income taxes are itemizable, so
> depending on if you pay more than about $4000 in state income taxes or
> not you will be itemizing.
>
> -ryan
>
> On Thu, Jan 13, 2011 at 9:31 PM, Ryan Castellucci
> <ryan.castellucci at gmail.com> wrote:
>> We're hackers.  We hack.  Let's make 'hack' the system by making
>> 'membership' $1/mo and encourage people to 'donate' $39/mo or $79/mo.
>>
>> Problem.  Solved.
>>
>> On Thu, Jan 13, 2011 at 9:21 PM, Sai <noisebridge at saizai.com> wrote:
>>> AFAICT, the part about 526 records means that NB would have to make an
>>> official decision that dues are donations.
>>>
>>> - Sai
>>>
>>> On Thu, Jan 13, 2011 at 11:18 PM, Ryan Castellucci
>>> <ryan.castellucci at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>> From a CPA I spoke with (since I'm probably itemizing this year) who
>>>> wishes to remain anonymous:
>>>>
>>>> ========================================================
>>>>
>>>> Membership fees paid to a 501(c)(3) are, in general, deductible as
>>>> charitable contributions.  For instance, paying dues to be a member
>>>> of the local S.P.C.A. is deductible.  The portion of the dues that
>>>> represents the value of any goods or services received in exchange
>>>> for a payment to a charity, however, is not deductible as a
>>>> charitable contribution.  For instance, if you pay $100 for a
>>>> membership to KQED but receive a "premium" of a book worth $15, then
>>>> only the excess $85 is deductible (even though you may perceive some
>>>> value by getting to continue to get to watch the programming).  If
>>>> you pay a charitable organization $50 to attend an event, the
>>>> admission of which is worth only $30, then the excess $20 is
>>>> deductible.  So -- what is the "value" of the benefits you receive
>>>> from Noisebridge?  Often, mere attendance at meetings is considered
>>>> to be of no value.  Example here:  if I pay $50 to be a member of
>>>> "Friends of the (insert name of municipality) Library" and there is
>>>> no change in my rights to use the library's resources, I get a $50 deduction.
>>>>
>>>> Having said all of that, you have to have enough itemized deductions
>>>> (medical, taxes, mortgage interest, charity, etc.) to actually
>>>> benefit from deducting charitable contributions -- that's because
>>>> most taxpayers are allowed to deduct a "standard deduction" and there
>>>> is no benefit from itemizing deductions unless the itemization
>>>> exceeds the standard deduction.  Additionally, there are strict rules
>>>> about receipts and/or acknowledgments for charitable contributions
>>>> -- both in terms of having the proof and in terms of what the charity
>>>> includes on the receipts and/or acknowledgments.  Repeat:  there are
>>>> strict rules about receipts and/or acknowledgments for charitable
>>>> contributions.  More information is available in this IRS
>>>> publication: http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p526.pdf  The section
>>>> entitled "Records to Keep" on pages 17 and 18 (in the 2009 version of
>>>> that publication) is of particular interest.
>>>>
>>>> Since "everything Noisebridge has/does is available to non-members"
>>>> (except voting/consensus), I see nothing but charitable
>>>> intent in paying membership dues and would deduct the dues, as long
>>>> as the record-keeping requirements enumerated in IRS Publication 526 are met.
>>>>
>>>> ================================================================
>>>>
>>>> On Thu, Jan 13, 2011 at 3:25 PM, rkt88edmo <rkt88edmo at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>> I do tax work for a living but don't specialize in indivdual taxation
>>>>> and am not a member but have been to the space.
>>>>>
>>>>> Since you didn't receive any goods or services from Noisebridge that
>>>>> aren't available to the general public you do not need to reduce your
>>>>> charitable donation deduction.  I wouldn't bother with assigning shelf
>>>>> space a dollar value unless "Noisebridge-the-official-legal-entity"
>>>>> makes a policy to do so or you really feel that it really is of
>>>>> substantial monetary value.
>>>>>
>>>>> Given the full membership rate I would encourge anyone who itemizes
>>>>> their deductions and who will deduct their Noisebridge membership dues
>>>>> to document the transactions and obtain the tax ID number of
>>>>> Noisebridge.  Even better would be a letter or receipt from
>>>>> Noisebridge with letterhead stating it is 501(c)3, including the TIN
>>>>> documenting amount of cash or cash value of property contributed;
>>>>> which I would hope you could obtain be if you do-ocratically drafted
>>>>> it yourself and present it to the treasurer via email or at a meeting.
>>>>>  If you did either of those I doubt any CPA would have trouble with
>>>>> you taking the donation.
>>>>>
>>>>> I can answer questions offline if you have any.
>>>>> _______________________________________________
>>>>> Noisebridge-discuss mailing list
>>>>> Noisebridge-discuss at lists.noisebridge.net
>>>>> https://www.noisebridge.net/mailman/listinfo/noisebridge-discuss
>>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>> --
>>>> Ryan Castellucci http://ryanc.org/
>>>> _______________________________________________
>>>> Noisebridge-discuss mailing list
>>>> Noisebridge-discuss at lists.noisebridge.net
>>>> https://www.noisebridge.net/mailman/listinfo/noisebridge-discuss
>>>>
>>>
>>
>>
>>
>> --
>> Ryan Castellucci http://ryanc.org/
>> _______________________________________________
>> Noisebridge-discuss mailing list
>> Noisebridge-discuss at lists.noisebridge.net
>> https://www.noisebridge.net/mailman/listinfo/noisebridge-discuss
>>
>



-- 
Ryan Castellucci http://ryanc.org/


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