June 22,2005

Baucus Commends Report from the Panel on the Nonprofit Sector

(WASHINGTON, D.C.) Today, U.S. Senator Max Baucus, ranking member of the SenateFinance Committee, issued the following statement as the Panel on the Nonprofit Sector releasedtheir final report on recommendations to improve nonprofit organizations. The report containscomprehensive proposals for addressing abuse in the sector and increasing transparency ofcharitable organizations.

The statement follows:

“Charities play an important role in the lives of many Americans. These organizationsare often the means by which people become involved with their communities and help thosewho are in need. Serving others has always been an important part of what makes Americashine, and in large part, it is charities that help make this happen. Many have seen their livesimprove because of the tireless work of charities.

“Unfortunately, some charities have been used to foster personal wealth rather than gooddeeds. Because of the deceitful actions of a few, public confidence has waned in the charitablesector and the tax system in general.

“In October 2004, Chairman Grassley and I sent a letter to Independent Sector – thenational advocate for charities – and asked them to form a blue ribbon panel to consider reformsin the charitable arena. Independent Sector responded to that call, and today I want to say that Iam pleased with their diligent effort.

“This report provides an excellent starting point for a discussion on reform. As theFinance Committee approaches charitable reform, the panel’s suggestions will provideinvaluable guidance as new legislation is drafted.

“The panel was given a very difficult task, but they were able to rise to the occasion andput together a comprehensive package that will help pave the road for charitable reform. I wantto thank the members of the panel who worked tirelessly to put these recommendations together.These suggestions will be very useful as the Finance Committee drafts legislation to improvecharitable governance.”