July 22, 2016

It’s time for double blessing of helping children, getting tax credit

By John Shaughnessy

As the beginning of another school year nears, archdiocesan officials want to alert people that the time period has already started for making donations that “give families access to a high-quality Catholic education”—contributions that also offer a substantial tax credit to the donor.

On July 1, $9.5 million in tax credits became available from the state of Indiana for the initiative that helps families choose the school of their choice for their children, said Mary McCoy, an assistant superintendent for Catholic schools in the archdiocese.

“Donors will earn a 50 percent state tax credit on gifts made through the Institute for Quality Education as long as they are received before the tax credits run out,” McCoy said. “During the last fiscal year, all of the tax credits were exhausted by early February of 2016, so we are encouraging people to make their gifts early.”

Such donations helped about 2,300 students attend Catholic schools in the 2015-16 school year, McCoy noted.

“We appreciate all of the generous donations made to the schools in the archdiocese,” she said. “These funds go a long way to give families access to high-quality Catholic education.”

Indiana’s Tax Credit Scholarship program was created to give families who meet certain income guidelines an opportunity to send their child to a participating private school.

McCoy explained that a Tax Credit Scholarship of at least $500 per child, given for one year, allows an eligible student to receive the state school voucher the following year and for up to 12 years of education in a Catholic school—a potential of $60,000 in state voucher assistance.

Donors are also able to maximize the tax benefits of contributing to a scholarship. With a 50 percent state tax credit and, for example, a 35 percent federal deduction, a donor can give $10,000 toward scholarships for as little as $3,250, McCoy noted.

For donors who pay taxes at a federal rate of 28 percent, and with a 50 percent state tax credit, they could give $1,000 toward scholarships for as little as $360 out-of-pocket cost, she said.

“Tax Credit Scholarship needs reach well into the middle class, especially for families with multiple children in our schools,” McCoy said. “Our hope is to raise enough funds in order for all families that choose a Catholic education for their children to be able to do so.”

Information about Tax Credit Scholarships is also available online at www.i4qed.org/sgo/schools or by contacting Cindy Riley in the archdiocese’s Office of Stewardship and Development by email at criley@archindy.org or by phone at 317-236-1415 or 800-382-9836, ext. 1415.

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