March 28, 2010: Cape Cod Times | Just about every day, there is a new legislative effort to tap the nonprofit sector for revenues to fill state, county, and municipal budget holes. In Rhode Island, the General Assembly appears to be nearing in on a plan to remove nonprofits’ exemption from paying the state’s 7 percent sales tax. Like many proposed fee-generating activities, this would affect big nonprofits like hospitals and universities and little groups like community development corporations, homeless shelter providers, and parent-teacher associations. According to the press, Rhode Island’s nonprofit sector “reacted with a combination of shock and disbelief.” Nonprofits outside of Rhode Island ought to be wary too. If Rhode Island does this, won’t other states compel nonprofits to pay sales taxes too?—Rick Cohen
About The Author
Rick joined NPQ in 2006, after almost eight years as the executive director of the National Committee for Responsive Philanthropy (NCRP). Before that he played various roles as a community worker and advisor to others doing community work. He also worked in government. Cohen pursued investigative and analytical articles, advocated for increased philanthropic giving and access for disenfranchised constituencies, and promoted increased philanthropic and nonprofit accountability.