March 2020 Policy Updates

March 2020 Policy Updates

FEDERAL

COVIT-19 federal appropriations
H.R.6074 - Coronavirus Preparedness and Response Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2020 passed on March 5th and was signed by the President on March 6th. This bill provides $8.3 billion in emergency funding for federal agencies to respond to the coronavirus outbreak, including grants to local nonprofit organizations.

Community Reinvestment Act
The Office of the Comptroller of the Currency and Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) have proposed revised rules under the Community Reinvestment Act that may decrease public accountability and expand the types of activities that qualify as a CRA investment. Currently, the law requires banks to work with nonprofits, small businesses, local officials, and community groups where they are physically located, specifically to serve low-to-moderate income neighborhoods.

2020 Census at Risk
The U.S. Census Bureau is behind on some of its goals - like recruiting enough workers - and needs to address concerns with its internet response system, according to a recent report of the Government Accountability Office. The report found significant IT and cybersecurity challenges for the 2020 Census. According to GAO, the 2020 Census is on its High Risk list because, as of this month, 28 of GAO’s 112 recommendations have not been fully implemented.

STATE

501c3 nonprofit donor disclosure requirement in state FY21 budget legislation
S7505/A9505, Part UU would require nonprofits registered with the Charities Bureau under Art. 7-A of the Executive Law (ie. those that are registered to solicit charitable funds) to file their CHAR 500 (including the IRS 990 and all attachments) with the state Tax Department, which in turn will make the information public on its website. Consistent with longstanding principles of donor confidentiality, currently both the Charities Bureau and IRS strictly protect the donor information contained in Schedule B of the 990. Part UU was not included in the Governor’s 30-day amendments. Nonprofit New York has held several legislative meetings opposing this new requirement.

State COVID-19 emergency response
The state legislature passed a late-night emergency bill (S7919/A9953) providing the Governor authority to issue any directive necessary to respond to a state disaster emergency and $40 million to address the COVID-19 public health crisis.

CITY

Protecting Your Nonprofit from COVID-19
The Lawyers Alliance for New York has developed a website with COVID-19 related updates, including a legal alert for nonprofits.

Nonprofit properties exempt from City’s lien sale
Intro 245 (Reynoso) 2018 passed the City Council on February 27. This bill will create a position of a not-for-profit ombudsperson within the Department of Finance (DOF), and exempt from the City’s lien sale any property owned by a not-for-profit organization that received a not-for-profit property tax exemption under in at least one of the prior two fiscal years, given certain conditions. Congratulations to the #ProtectOurPlaces coalition for their hard work getting this bill passed!

Coronavirus: Let’s stay healthy and be kind.
In response to the COVID-19 rapidly changing developments, Nonprofit New York is sharing resources and recommendations on staying healthy and being kind to fellow community members during this time.