Direct Your IRA Distribution to ELi: Save on Taxes and Support Local News!

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Because East Lansing Info (ELi) is a recognized 501(c)(3) nonprofit charitable organization, some of our readers are able to find ways to save on income tax liability when they make a contribution to ELi.

One pattern we’ve seen forming during ELi’s year-end 2022 Sustainability Campaign involves senior citizens opting to direct part of their IRA required minimum distribution to ELi.

We asked one such donor (who asked to remain anonymous in this article) to tell us about why he and his spouse chose to do this, so we could share his take with our readers. Here’s what he said:

“We support ELI because they shine light on the workings of our local government, reveal the good and not-so-good of city developments, and dig into the real concerns of our citizens. The folks at ELI provide something of real value that almost NO other places have – honest investigative reporting for the people. I’m grateful and want to keep them going.”

“For seniors like me, donating to charitable organizations, like ELI, is simple and has a great payoff,” the reader/donor added. “With Qualified Charitable Distributions, we avoid some income taxes on our IRA investments, meet our required minimum distributions and replace taxable income too with tax-free contributions. Who doesn’t like to save on taxes and get something as cool as East Lansing Info as well?””

For taxpayers in this category, this kind of donation avoids tax without requiring itemization. And you can contribute MORE than your minimum required distribution to help ELi keep bringing the news!

If you’re interested in using this approach, we would recommend you talk to your tax advisor. But here are some basics of how this works:

The requirements generally call for a person to be at least 70.5 years of age and have a traditional (not Roth) IRA or similarly tax-sheltered retirement account.

To make the donation, you must contact your IRA manager (online or in person) and arrange to have them send the check DIRECTLY to ELi. It’s important that they send this directly for you to get the tax benefit of donating the funds. (This direct-mailing of the contribution from the IRA fund is required of all charitable donations of this type, not just for ELi.)

To have a check sent directly to ELi, arrange for it to be made payable to “East Lansing Info” and send it to East Lansing Info, PO Box 115, East Lansing MI 48826-0115. Note that our EIN is 46-5444564. If the system requires a street address and not a post office box, or requires any other info, write to us for the information and we’ll be glad to supply it!

To get the tax break for 2021, arrange this contribution before the end of the year. If you are going to make a contribution after the new year, just let us know by writing to fundraise@eastlansinginfo.news, so we can count the commitment towards our $200,000 Sustainability Campaign goal.

You can find lots of other ways to donate to ELi listed here!

Thank you so much for your support!

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