WEBSTER CITY - In Iowa, planting season is underway and, for some farmers, they will be planting more than just crops this year. Some will be planting seeds that will provide a way for them to make a difference long-term throughout Hamilton County.
By donating through the "Gifts of Grain" program, farmers have a unique opportunity to donate a portion of their crops to the Enhance Hamilton County Foundation to support their favorite county non-profit or community need. In addition, the farmer can benefit from tax savings that may be greater than if they had sold the commodity and then donated a portion of the proceeds directly to the cause.
"When a farmer is wanting to make a charitable gift to the cause of their choice, " said Darcy Swon, Development Director of Enhance Hamilton County Foundation, "they can contact the Foundation. We can assist them with getting the process set up with the local grain elevator so their donation can be received."
When the grain is delivered to the elevator, the elevator will direct the specified portion of the load to the account that has been set up. "We handle setting up the account with the cooperative and make sure the farmer receives a receipt and a settlement report to support yield reports," said Swon. "The only thing left for the farmer to do is file a Schedule F with their Federal Income Tax Return."
Hamilton County farmer, Brian Holt, recently gave a "gift of grain" and found it to be a very easy process. "My wife and I wanted to make a contribution to a local charity and our 'Endow Iowa' qualified charitable fund, established through Enhance Hamilton County Foundation. We found that this was a very simple way to make a donation by using grain," said Holt. "We really like this program because it allows us to contribute a portion of our crops, plus receive tax savings and tax credits that make this a true win/win. We get to make an investment into something that we are passionate about and receive tax benefits in doing so."
While making a donation of grain may not be as simple as writing a check, it is clear that in certain instances such a contribution can be an effective way to manage taxes and support worthy charities. It is encouraged that you contact your tax advisor to see if this strategy is right for you before making any donations.
To learn more about charitable giving opportunities and the gift of grain program in Hamilton County, contact Darcy Swon, Development Director, Enhance Hamilton County Foundation, by calling 515-835-0437 or visit the Foundation's website at enhancehamiltoncounty.org.