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Fundraising, Management Issues/Bicentennial Celebration fund-raising

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Question
Because the Bicentennial Committee in our small, rural town has been officially approved by the Town Board we cannot legally solicit funds to pay for planned events. We do have another group willing to do this for us as "Friends of --- Bicentennial". What is the best way to set this up? Do we need an EIN or just a DBA? They would be sending out letters to businesses and individuals who would be recognized in our commemorative booklet (advertising?)and we don't expect large amounts from corporations that would be looking for a tax write off.

Answer
1.  Why does Town Board approval mean you can't solicit funds for your project?

2.  If no tax deduction is involved your bank can set up a fund for you under a DBA.  If some will want the deduction, ask a local 501(c)3 charity to act as your fiscal agent for the duration of your campaign; they will receive the funds for you and disburse them as you request.  If that won't work, file for 501(c)3 status which can take awhile but you can accept gifts while approval is pending.

From my point of view, without knowing why Town approval limits you, I would push for the town to set up an account for you just like the "fiscal agent" option.  Governments can accept gifts and those are deductible under regular rules (There are people who make gifts to the IRS in addition to their taxes and some have been quite large.)

Let me know if I can be more helpful.

Best wishes.

Fundraising, Management Issues

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Steve Wilkerson

Expertise

Annual fund, direct mail, capital campaigns, consultants, major gifts, fund-raising planning, case statements, prospect research,

Experience

41 years as senior development officer of significant recognizable institutions in education, health-care, academic medical centers, colleges, universities, churches, synagogues and general fund-raising consulting.

Publications
Jossey-Bass Series on Fundraising

Education/Credentials
BA, University of the South, Sewanee, TN Graduate study in political science, Emory University, Atlanta, GA

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