(The Associated Press) Nearly 200,000 small charities who missed the Monday deadline for filing taxes are getting a break from the IRS. In 2006, a new law mandated that nonprofits with receipts under $25,000 had to file tax returns for the first time in 2007. If these nonprofits neglected to file for three years, they would forfeit tax-exemption. Churches are excluded from the provision. IRS Commissioner Doug Shulman is urging charities to file as soon as possible so as not to lose tax-exempt status. In a statement on Tuesday, Mr. Shulman said, “The guidance will offer relief to these small organizations and provide them with the opportunity to keep their critical tax-exempt status intact. Filing a tax return for the small organizations is easier than you’d think. It just takes a few minutes to fill out the electronic notice Form 990-N.”
(The Associated Press) “Take what you need, leave your fair share.” That’s the motto for Panera Bread Company’s new nonprofit bakery and cafe in Clayton, Missouri. The menu is the same as Panera’s 1400 other locations, but the prices are up to customers to decide. It might seem risky, but other restaurants have operated on similar principles. Ms. Denise Cerreta, founder of The One World Salt Lake City restaurant, a nonprofit establishment since 2003, said, “It somehow stays in balance. I think ultimately people are good. They want to contribute.” Panera’s new restaurant is funded by a nonprofit foundation and will be used to support the restaurant and hopefully to open other stores; if the experiment fails, the parent company will not experience losses.
(BBC News) Charles Dickens once wrote, “we can all do some good, if we will,” and it seems a Northumberland millionaire is taking those words to heart. Mr. Brian Burnie, a 64-year-old father of three, put his estate on the market for £9 million, promising to give all the money to charity. His wife, Shirley, is a breast cancer survivor, and the money will be given to improve cancer care in the region. “We live in a me, me, me society and it has always been important to me to think of others,” Mr. Burnie said. “We can all do something by leaving money to charity when we die, but why don’t we do something while we are still living?” Mr. Burnie and his family will live on their private pension after the estate is sold. Though Mr. Burnie is “sad to leave” his estate, he insists, “To be able to do something to help people has a much bigger return than any financial gain.”