President's Perspective Blog

Lend Your Support to the Charitable Act

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As part of AFP’s advocacy efforts, we keep track of, and lend support to, relevant legislation that will benefit fundraisers and the nonprofit industry. 

One of the issues that AFP has been keeping tabs on the last few years is the universal charitable deduction. During the pandemic, the CARES Act permitted eligible individuals who do not itemize deductions to deduct $300 of qualified charitable contribution. This universal charitable deduction was extended through 2021, however, the effort to extend the deduction through 2022 (The Universal Giving Pandemic Response and Recovery Act) was unsuccessful. 

Now, AFP is pleased to lend their support to a bipartisan bill, the Charitable Act, introduced in the Senate by U.S. Senators James Lankford (R-OK) and Chris Coons (D-DE) on March 1, 2023. 

The new Charitable Act is nearly identical to the previous bill, proposing to restore the universal charitable deduction and raise the cap from $300 for individuals ($600 for joint filers) to approximately $4,600 for individuals ($9,200 for joint filers). It would take effect for 2023 and 2024.

The same bill was introduced this past week by Reps. Blake Moore (R-UT), Chris Pappas (D-NH), Michelle Steel (R-CA), and Danny Davis (D-IL) in the House of Representatives. 

AFP and the other organizations supporting this legislation believe that this type of universal deduction will go a long way towards incentivizing charitable giving. And the data supports this. 

AFP’s Fundraising Effectiveness Project found that the number of small donations in the $300-$600 range, went up by nearly 11% over the course of 2020 and 2021, while the deduction was in effect. However, in 2022, there was a 5% decline as the deduction was allowed to expire. 

The latest data from Q4 of 2022 shows that total dollars given, which had previously remained stable, is also now in decline, adding to the challenges that nonprofits have faced due to the decline in number of donors. 

Enacting the proposed legislation will hopefully provide individuals the additional incentive they need to donate to the causes that matter to them. That is why your support of this bill is so important. 

If you would like to reach out to your representatives to encourage them to sign on to this bill, you can use these resources to find out who to contact: 

You can also download the resources below to use as reference when reaching out. I’d like to encourage everyone to get involved and help garner support for this important legislation. 

If you have any questions or comments, as always, please feel free to email me at or connect with me on Twitter at @AFPMikeGeiger. I’d love to hear from you.

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Mike Geiger, MBA, CPA

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