Tag Archives: public charity

Can We Get a Charitable Discount?

From time to time (actually frequently) Hansen Pole Buildings is contacted by individuals who are looking for a “price break” for being a “charitable” organization. Popular examples are for helping military veterans, disabled, terminally ill children or animal rescue shelters. We have tremendous respect for those who have given their service to our country and having personally lost two children to cystic fibrosis, my heart goes out to parents in similar situations.

While the great majority of these requests seemingly are for good causes, there are so many requests and, in order to at least make some sort of profit to keep our doors open, some criteria needed to be established to qualify.

In this case, we let our U.S. Government establish criteria to qualify for a discount as a charitable organization. Any 501(c)(3) exempted organization qualifies for a 10% discount off from Hansen Pole Buildings low everyday retail prices.

501(c)(3) exemptions apply to corporations, and any community chest, fund, cooperating association or foundation, organized and operated exclusively for religious, charitable, scientific, testing for public safety, literary, or educational purposes, to foster national or international amateur sports competition, to promote arts, or for prevention of cruelty to children or animals.

There are two exempt classifications of 501(c)(3) organizations as follows:
A public charity, identified by Internal Revenue Service (IRS) as “not a private foundation,” normally receives a substantial part of its income, directly or indirectly, from general public or government entities. Public support must be fairly broad, not limited to a few individuals or families. Public charities are defined in Internal Revenue Code under sections 509(a)(1) through 509(a)(4).

A private foundation, sometimes called a non-operating foundation, receives most of its income from investments and endowments. This income is used to make grants to other organizations, rather than being disbursed directly for charitable activities. Private foundations are defined under Internal Revenue Code section 509(a) as 501(c)(3) organizations which do not qualify as public charities.