‘Tax Credit Team’ makes getting Arizona charitable tax credits easy

‘Tax Credit Team’ makes getting Arizona charitable tax credits easy,
creates brighter futures for children and families

Tax Credit Tuesday happens December 1

PHOENIX (Nov. 9, 2015) – Each year, millions of dollars in state tax credits go unused by Arizona residents who either aren’t familiar with the process to claim tax credits, or simply don’t know that certain tax credits are offered to them. This year, a collaboration of Valley nonprofits is looking to change that by increasing awareness of available tax credits, while expanding funding for nonprofit programs and services that help hundreds of thousands of Arizona children and families each year.

Tuesday, Dec. 1, already designated as “Giving Tuesday” across the nation, will be a day to celebrate and bring awareness to the unique opportunity that Arizona taxpayers have to give and get back through Arizona tax credits. Nine tax credit-eligible nonprofit organizations have partnered for what they have newly-coined, “Tax Credit Tuesday.”

“The reason this team came together is because the state of Arizona allows taxpayers to choose how their tax dollars are spent,” said Jake Adams, chief development officer at Southwest Human Development. “The Arizona Tax Credit Team includes schools and nonprofit organizations that give Arizona’s most vulnerable children a brighter future and the already existing tax credit opportunities are being highly underused at a time when funding is needed the most.”

The state of Arizona offers several charitable tax credits that allow Arizona taxpayers to make a donation to a qualifying organization and receive a dollar-for-dollar credit up to each credit’s allowable amount:

Contributions to Qualifying Foster Care Charitable Organizations
The maximum tax credit for foster care qualifying organizations is $400 for single filers and $800 for married. You can contribute both to Foster Care and Qualifying Charitable Organizations with a combined contribution of $400 for single filers and $800 for married. Qualifying foster care organizations must have greater than 50 percent of its annual budget dedicated to foster care programs and services, and provide ongoing services to at least 200 individuals during a year to qualify for this credit.
• Arizona Friends of Foster Children Foundation – (602) 252-9445 or www.affcf.org
• Voices for CASA Children – (480) 685-4888 or www.voicesforcasachildren.org

Contributions to Qualifying Charitable Organizations
Formerly called the Working Poor Tax Credit, Contributions to Qualifying Charitable Organizations is an individual Arizona tax credit that is available to taxpayers who make donations to a limited list of eligible nonprofit organizations that provide assistance to working, low-income individuals and families. The maximum tax credit you may receive for contributions under this credit is $200 for single tax filers and $400 for those filing married/joint.

Contributions to Private School Tuition Organizations and Certified School Tuition Organizations
Arizona taxpayers may claim a credit for making a donation to a School Tuition Organization for scholarships to private schools. The maximum credit that may be taken for tax year 2015 is $535 for single tax filers and $1,070 for married/filing joint. An additional tax credit may be taken if the amount contributed is greater than the maximum amount that can be claimed. The maximum additional credit is $532 for single tax filers and $1,064 for married/filing joint.

Contributions or Fees Paid to a Public School
Taxpayers can use Arizona’s public school tax credit to contribute to public elementary, middle and high schools. The credit is available for making contributions or paying fees to a public school for support of extracurricular activities (i.e., band, uniforms for athletics, laboratory equipment, competitive event trips), or character education programs. The maximum public school tax credit is $200 for single tax filers and $400 for married/filing joint.

“The tax credits that Arizona has made available are extremely generous,” said CPA Randy Wagner.
“By offering these credits, they’re essentially saying that you – the taxpayer – can decide how and where your tax dollars are spent. It’s like making a free donation and you don’t even have to itemize your taxes to get them. Plus, all of these credits can be claimed together, so you can give donations to
eligible organizations across the board and get them all back on your return.”

For more information about available Arizona charitable tax credits and lists of qualifying Arizona nonprofit organizations for each of the credits, visit Arizona’s Department of Revenue website at www.azdor.gov/taxcredits or contact your personal tax advisor.