Nonprofit Currents
Apr. 23, 2014

Minimum wage: Tough choices for states, cities and nonprofits
From Nonprofit Quarterly
Hopefully, nonprofits are on the side of raising the minimum wage in their states and ensuring that their own employees are beneficiaries. This year already, five states — Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Minnesota, and West Virginia — and the District of Columbia have increased their minimum wage levels above the federal minimum of $7.25 an hour. That means more than half of the states will be above the federal minimum wage. Other states with increases progressing in their legislatures include Hawaii, Illinois, Massachusetts, and Vermont.More

Jon Huntsman Sr. receives 2014 Simon philanthropy prize
From The Chronicle of Philanthropy
Billionaire industrialist Jon M. Huntsman Sr., who has poured more than $450-million of his fortune into cancer research, has been named the 2014 recipient of the William E. Simon Prize for Philanthropic Leadership, the Deseret News reports. The $250,000 award, payable to the charity of the winner’s choice, is bestowed by the Philanthropy Roundtable, a network of foundations and individual and corporate donors which the late Mr. Simon, a former U.S. treasury secretary, helped establish.More

Can Michael Bloomberg really build a gun-control lobby bigger than the NRA?
From The Washington Post
For most of the past decade, if you could even hear the voice of national gun-control advocacy over the roar of the NRA, it probably came from mayors. It came from Michael Bloomberg in New York, Tom Menino in Boston and Michael Nutter in Philadelphia. It came from their national coalition of Mayors Against Illegal Guns, a group that kept trying to make the point that gun control looks like a bipartisan issue if you just ask the elected officials who deal most closely with the collateral damage. More

MoMA's expansion and director draw critics
From The New York Times
Glenn D. Lowry, who will soon begin his 20th year running the Museum of Modern Art, has a longstanding practice of taking time each week to visit artists’ studios. Which is why he could be found one recent morning along the Gowanus Canal in Brooklyn, watching the glass-blowing sculptor Josiah McElheny and assistants fashion a vessel from molten lumps, a process almost Elizabethan in its rituals. “It’s one of the most amazing things I’ve ever seen,” Lowry said. “It’s balletic, the way they move and work together.” During his ambitious tenure at the museum’s helm, Lowry has choreographed a highly complex ballet of his own, one that has not always gone as smoothly.More

MADD refuses court-ordered donation from Rhode Island mother
From Providence Journal
The North Kingstown police reached a deal to drop a charge that a local mother violated the state’s social-host law by allowing teenagers to drink at her daughter’s 16th birthday party in exchange for her contributing $5,000 to Mothers Against Drunk Driving. But MADD, whose mission is to stop drunken driving and prevent underage drinking, wants nothing to do with the money, according to Gabrielle Abbate, executive director of MADD in Rhode Island. The organization will not accept the contribution.More

Gates' nonprofit 'InBloom' to close
From The New York Times
In a setback for the nearly $8 billion prekindergarten through 12th-grade education technology software market, inBloom, a non-profit corporation offering to warehouse and manage student data for public school districts across the country, announced that it planned to shut its doors. Financed with $100 million in seed money from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation along with the Carnegie Corporation of New York, the venture promised to streamline how teachers and administrators accessed student records. But the project ran into roadblocks in a number of districts and states over privacy and security issues. More

IRS chief: New rule on the way for tax-exempt groups
From USA TODAY
The Internal Revenue Service is prepared to rewrite a proposed rule regulating the political activities of non-profit groups to address complaints from the right and left that it goes too far, IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said. "In all likelihood we will re-propose a redefined rule and ask for more public comment," Koskinen told USA TODAY's Capital Download. It's a process he predicts will take "until the end of the year and beyond" to complete. The proposed regulation of groups known as 501(c)(4)s drew a record 150,000 comments before the deadline in late February.More

Google challenges nonprofits on ideas to use Glass
From The Associated Press via WLTX-TV
Google has a challenge for U.S. nonprofits. The tech giant is asking nonprofit groups to propose ideas for how to use the Web-connected eyewear Google Glass in their work. Five charities that propose the best ideas by May 20 will get a free pair of the glasses, a trip to Google for training and a $25,000 grant to help make their project a reality.More

Arizona Senate approves religious tax breaks
From The Associated Press via KVOA-TV
A bill allowing private property owners who lease space to churches to get a tax break will soon hit Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer's desk. The Senate recently approved House Bill 2281, which grants property owners who lease to churches but aren't themselves religiously affiliated similar tax breaks to the ones churches get when they own property. The tax break applies only to space used for worship services. The Senate approved the House-passed bill with a 16-14 vote.More

Minimum wage: Tough choices for states, cities and nonprofits
From Nonprofit Quarterly
Hopefully, nonprofits are on the side of raising the minimum wage in their states and ensuring that their own employees are beneficiaries. This year already, five states — Connecticut, Delaware, Maryland, Minnesota, and West Virginia — and the District of Columbia have increased their minimum wage levels above the federal minimum of $7.25 an hour.More

Optimal times to post on social networks: Infographic
From Nonprofit Quarterly
SumAll.com has taken data analytics from the social media activities of a series of companies, from larger corporations to small businesses, to determine the best times to post on social media platforms. SumAll created the following infographic for nonprofit communications experts to help break down the optimal times to post on Facebook, Google+, Instagram, Pinterest, Tumblr and Twitter. More

Livestrong without Lance
From Inc. via Slate
It was a Wednesday in October 2012, and Ulman, CEO and president of the Livestrong Foundation, had just received the inevitable news he had been dreading for months: The United States Anti-Doping Agency’s long-awaited and damning report, which concluded once and for all that Lance Armstrong, the cancer charity’s founder and chairman, was guilty of doping during his legendary cycling career.More

Texas universities enjoying benefits of national giving splurge
From Houston Chronicle
Nationwide, cash gifts to colleges and universities are up despite a shrinking pool of donors. Charitable contributions to U.S. institutions of higher education increased 9 percent in 2013 to $33.8 billion, according to the latest annual report from the Council for Aid to Education. It's the highest total in the report's history dating back to 1957. At UT-Austin, charitable giving has recovered well since the recession hit in 2008, spokesman Gary Susswein said. "We're on pace to reach our $3 billion capital campaign goal by the end of the summer," he said.More

Michigan township cannot remove donation bins
From The Associated Press via The Washington Post
A Michigan township will not immediately be allowed to remove outdoor clothing donation bins placed by a Maryland-based nonprofit group, a judge ruled. U.S. District Court Judge Denise Page Hood granted a request by Planet Aid for a temporary restraining order. The charity has 16 clothing and shoe collection bins on commercial properties in Washtenaw County’s Ypsilanti Township and said it was being unfairly targeted.More