Tick. Tick. Tick. On Your Free Political Donation

Evan Manvel

It's that end of year time when we're scurrying around getting things done.

Amidst the chaos, make sure you use your Oregon Political Tax Credit!

Oregon is a wonderful place for many reasons, including our unique political tax credit. It's our form of public campaign financing, a small investment in engaging people in democracy.

Yes, Oregon's been doing it for a lot longer than Seattle's cool new public financing effort. And just recently, legislators made it more progressive — cutting out eligibility of single filers making more than $100,000 and joint filers earning more than $200,000.

Here's the Deal: $50/$100 is Yours to Direct

Oregon allows you to subtract donations to political groups or campaigns from your state taxes - up to $50 for individuals, or $100 for couples filing jointly. If you owe taxes, you can subtract your contribution from what you owe. If the state owes you a refund, they will add it to your refund check.

This is a tax credit, not a deduction, so every dollar comes back to you! (Presuming you pay at least $50/$100 in state taxes.)

You can't use this credit for charities. It can only be used to contribute to a political group like Planned Parenthood Advocates of Oregon, Basic Rights Oregon Equality PAC, Future PAC, NARAL Pro-Choice Oregon PAC, Senate Democratic Leadership Fund, OLCV PAC, BusPAC, etc. -- or candidate campaigns in Oregon, including all those mayoral candidates, legislative candidates, soil and water conservation district candidates, etc.

The explanation from the state is on page 21 of this publication. It's the line 37 credit on Oregon's basic form 40 - so no, you don't need to itemize your taxes to qualify!

And if you — like most regular BlueOregon readers — have already given your tax credit, remind your friends! Pick a PAC to promote and send this on. Fewer than 3% of Oregonians use this tax credit. You might be shocked at how many people haven't heard about it but would love to use it.

Happy holidays. And feel free to mention your own favorite PAC in the comments.

Disclaimer: feel free to talk to your tax advisor if you have one. This message isn't financial advice and all that. Read more at Oregon Tax Credit.com, a site Kari Chisholm created.

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