Charlotte Observer: Is Your Charity Making Their CEO Wealthy?

That's right people. Your donation may not be helping the needy. We have noted this in the case of several Jewish charities over the past year.

So we thought it corrective to go to the most Gentile source we could find to see what they had to say. (Actually we extend a hat tip to the Bergen Record for doing that by reprinting part of this story and series in today's paper.)

The Charlotte Observer tell us, "How we did this story," as follows, "Using a Guidestar database listing compensation to more than 10,000 nonprofit executives in the Carolinas, the Observer examined top-paying charities in several categories. Reporters focused on mid-sized charities -- with budgets ranging from $2 million to $50 million - that depend on individual contributions and tax dollars. For this project, the newspaper did not focus on hospitals and universities, which tend to have larger budgets and more complex missions."

This is a sad account because it makes people who are generous and altruistic so confused.

We want to give to the poor and to worthy causes. Does that mean that we have to make these greedy CEO's wealthy in the process? We are afraid so; in many cases, the answer is a non-denominational yes...for Jewish and Gentile charities alike.
For too many nonprofits, charity starts at the top
Loose rules and scant oversight let nonprofits pay huge salaries. Some Carolinas CEOs reap the rewards.
By Ames Alexander

In Cornelius, a nonprofit set up to help people in debt paid its chief executive more than $5 million - nearly everything it had.

In Anson County, a charity that worked to keep troubled children in school paid its leader about $300,000 a year, roughly twice as much as the county superintendent of schools.

In Spartanburg, a nonprofit religious broadcaster paid its president and her husband nearly $800,000 - a third of the organization's budget.

On paper, federal law prohibits charities from awarding excessive compensation to their leaders.

But in practice, loopholes and understaffed regulators allow nonprofits to pay almost any salary, an Observer investigation found.

"The (IRS) criteria for excessive compensation are so loose that they're virtually worthless...," says Pablo Eisenberg, a senior fellow at the Georgetown Public Policy Institute. "The sky's the limit."

Regulators rarely enforce the rules that do exist. Most years, fewer than 10 of the nearly two million U.S. nonprofit leaders are penalized for receiving excessive compensation. And the IRS office that monitors nonprofits is so thinly staffed it examines just 1 percent of their returns...more...
Lot's more on this subject to read at the Observer.

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