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SBNR to match donations to NR Area Foundation

TEAMING UP — SBNR President Kristi Harrington, left, and NRAF coordinator Gail Schmidt hope to see the NRAF fund go up by the end of the year. (Star Eagle photo by Jim Lutgens)

By JIM LUTGENS
Editor/Publisher

It's that time of year again. No, not Christmas, although that's also on the agenda.

It's the time every year that the New Richland Area Foundation goes all out in its fund-raising efforts, and this year the State Bank of New Richland is proud to participate.

For every dollar donated from now through Dec. 31, the bank will provide a matching donation up to a total of $10,000.

"The bank is excited to initiate this end-of-the-year matching grant initiative," said SBNR President Kristi Harrington. "Gift to the foundation yet in 2016 and see your contribution go farther."

The larger the fund balance, the more dollars the NRAF is able to grant to our schools, local people and organizations. The NRAF granted at least $15,000 in each of the last three years, but grant requests continue to total more than $35,000 each year.

“Based on these requested dollars, the need to grow the fund is definitely there,” said Gail Schmidt. There is about $425,000 in the fund at this time.

"We are only able to grand a percentage of the fund based on a formula of investment interest used by the Minnesota Community of Funds,” said Schmidt.

And the more that fund grows by the end of the year, the more the NRAF can grant in 2017.

Donations can be made in several different ways, but one way is from farmers in the form of commodities. The NRAF received a commodity  from a local farmer in 2011 when someone anonymously donated four semi loads of grain worth about $28,000.

Tax benefits of donating farm-raised commodities by a farmer-producer (not a landlord):

• Save on income tax. A gift of grain or livestock will reduce farm income for the purpose of calculating both federal and state taxes.

• Save on self-employment taxes. No self-employment tax will be due on the income saved.

Other benefits of a commodities gift vs. a cash gift:

• Avoid deduction limitations. A donor who has reached the percentage limitation for deducting cash gifts in a particular year would still be able to receive the tax benefit of a commodities gift in the current year.

• Retain tax benefit for non-itemizers. To realize a benefit for a cash gift, a donor must itemize deductions on Schedule A. If the donor's itemized deductions do not exceed the standard deduction, the donor realizes no tax benefit from the gift that would not already have been realized through taking the standard deduction. A commodities gift provides tax benefit to donors who do not itemize deductions.

Collectively, these benefits most often outweigh the tax benefit resulting from selling grain or commodities, realizing the income, gifting the cash, and taking a charitable deduction on Schedule

As always, donors are advised to consult a tax advisor to determine the best course of action.

"This is just one way to donate to the NRAF," said Schmidt. "There are many other ways to contribute as well: cash, real estate, life insurance, estates, memorials, to name a few. Our intent is to highlight these ways of giving from time to time. Remember the NR Area Foundation when you want to make a contribution. Your gift, large or small, will go far in the efforts to support our local schools and community as a whole. We welcome your continued support as we continue to grow our fund balance."

“Wouldn’t it be awesome to see the local NRAF grow by $20,000 by the end of 2016?” , said Schmidt. “In order to make this happen we need your support and contributions.” Anyone interested in making a contribution must do so by Dec. 31. All donations can be made at the State Bank of NR.

For more information on how you can help grow the fund, contact any of the NRAF Grants Committee members: Schmidt, Pam Goehring, Matt Harrington, Kermit Schoenrock, Jill Schlaak. Or call Karen Buum, executive director of the Waseca Area Fund, at 507-835-5990.

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