KTTU "In Focus," Sunday, 11/28/10, 10:30 M

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By Bryce Potter By Bryce Potter

Host Bob Lee interviews Brenda Goldsmith, Executive Director, El Rio Health Center Foundation, and Barbara Brown, Community Development Director, Habitat for Humanity.

Under Arizona law, a credit is provided for cash contributions made to certain charities that provide help to the working poor.  It can reduce your State income tax bill.

Brown says charities offering food, shelter and health-care to people whose income is below the Federal  poverty level can qualify.  She says if you donate to a qualifying charity by December 31 you can claim a tax credit of up to $2000 if filing as an individual.  She says couples filing jointly can receive up to a $400 tax credit.  She says the only stipulation is that you must “itemize” your State tax return.  She says the Arizona Charitable Tax Credit is completely separate from the Private School Tuition and Public School Activity tax credits, as well as the Federal E.I.T.C.  The donation may also be claimed on your Federal tax return, she adds.

Goldsmith says in general philanthropic giving is down, due to the ongoing economic slump.  She says individual donations have increased, but the dollar amounts are lower.  She says charitable foundations are struggling as well, as the value of their investment portfolios declines.