Category Archives: Nonprofits

Creating a nonprofit just got easier

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If you’ve been procrastinating on registering a charity as a nonprofit, your dilly-dallying is now justified.

The Internal Revenue Service just announced a streamlined process for applying for 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status. The new Form 1023-EZ cuts the standard Form 1023 from 26 pages to three pages.

Up to 70 percent of charities qualify to use the EZ form, according to an IRS news release. Most groups with $50,000 or less in gross receipts and less than $250,000 in assets will be eligible.

The idea behind the form is to free up resources dedicated to approving small, simple charities, so more resources can be dedicated to reviewing larger, more complex organizations. The IRS has a backlog of about 60,000 501(c)(3) applications, with wait times of up to nine months.

“Previously, all of these groups went through the same lengthy application process — regardless of size,” IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said in the release. “It didn’t matter if you were a small soccer or gardening club or a major research organization. This process created needlessly long delays for groups, which didn’t help the groups, the taxpaying public or the IRS.”

The Form 1023-EZ must be filed through pay.gov with a $400 user fee. Download this PDF for full details.

Photo: Lisa Horn of West Sound Wildlife Shelter releases a bald eagle. (Brad Camp / Olympic Photo Group)

Bainbridge art museum logged 80k visits in first year

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Bainbridge Island Museum of Art celebrates its first anniversary this week.

It was a busy first year for the new Winslow Way institution. The free museum logged roughly 80,000 visits (about 6,600 a month) since opening, according to staff. Here are some more factoids from BIMA’s first year in existence:

  • blog.bima2Visitors came from Bainbridge Island, greater Kitsap county, Seattle, Tacoma, Bellevue, and from all corners of the world — Asia, Australia, Canada, Europe and more.
  • The museum hosted more than 46 groups for formal tours, including Horizon House, the National League of Cities, Leadership Kitsap, and Docents from Bellevue Arts Museum, Museum of Northwest Art, and Seattle Art Museum Supporters.
  • More than 477 school-aged children visited the museum from Bainbridge Island, Bremerton, Port Ludlow, Port Townsend, Sequim, and Silverdale.
  • More than 100 BIMA volunteers contributed time.

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Map illustrates affordable housing gap in Kitsap

housing.mapThere are 29 affordable housing units available for every 100 families living on extremely low incomes in Kitsap County.

That’s according to analysis by the nonprofit Urban Institute, which compiled a county-by-county map illustrating the nationwide affordable housing gap.

The institute’s breakdown of Kitsap shows 7,165 families in the county earn less than $22,700 annually, based on 2012 data. There are 2,065 affordable units in the county, 2,211 with HUD assistance. (Click the graphic above to expand.)

The map also shows the change in the affordable housing gap over time, with statistics from 2000 and 2006. According to the analysis, Kitsap gained affordable units between 2000 and 2006, while the number of extremely low income households remained steady.The the number of low income households swelled between 2006 and 2012 but the county lost affordable housing units over the same period.

The current 29 units to 100 households ratio for Kitsap happens to also be the national average. No county in the U.S. has as many affordable units as extremely low income households according to the institute.

The full map is embedded below, but it easier to navigate on the institute’s website.

Great Peninsula Conservancy moving downtown

blog.corner.buildingThe nonprofit Great Peninsula Conservancy is moving to a prominent downtown corner, after outgrowing its Kitsap Way digs.

The land trust will slide into a corner office on the top floor of the Sound West Building at the corner of Pacific Avenue and 5th Street.

Great Peninsula Conservancy is currently located at 3721 Kitsap Way. The small offices were getting cramped with a staff of five and a growing list of projects, said Executive Director Sandra Staples-Bortner. The group was interested in the exposure offered on Pacific Avenue, and liked the growing energy downtown.

“We see what’s happening there and want to be a part of it,”Staples-Bortner said. Continue reading