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Is There A Regional Bias in Federal Tax Subsidy Rates for Giving?

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  • Charles T. Clotfelter
  • Daniel R. Feenberg

Abstract

This study examines regional variation in average subsidy rates for charitable donations. Because the tax incentive for contributions is embodied in an itemized deduction, the subsidy rate for an individual depends on the taxpayer's itemization status and marginal tax rate. It is well know that this subsidy rate rises with income. On a regional level, one would expect that subsidy rates would be higher in wealthier regions. What is not clear is the extent of such variation or whether subsidy rates vary systematically independent of income. In order to examine the various sources of variation, we decompse subsidy rates. We find significant variation in subsidy rates independent of income, in what appears to be an unintended regional bias in the federal policy toward charitable giving. If most contributions remain in the state or region of the donor, this bias will tend to affect the regional development of the nonprofit sector.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc in its series NBER Working Papers with number 2564.

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Date of creation: Apr 1988
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Publication status: published as Clotfelter, Charles T. and Daniel R. Feenberg, "Is There A Regional Bias in Federal Tax Subsidy Rates for Giving?." Public Finance, Vol. XXXXV, No. 2, pp. 228-239, (1990).
Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:2564

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  1. Charles T. Clotfelter, 1985. "Federal Tax Policy and Charitable Giving," NBER Books, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc, number clot85-1, July.
  2. Clotfelter, Charles T., 1985. "Federal Tax Policy and Charitable Giving," National Bureau of Economic Research Books, University of Chicago Press, edition 1, number 9780226110486, January.
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Cited by:
  1. Feenberg, Daniel R. & Skinner, Jonathan, 2000. "Federal Medicare Transfers Across States: Winners and Losers," National Tax Journal, National Tax Association, vol. 53(n. 3), pages 713-32, September.

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