by Sarah Einselen
United Way of Cass County voted this week to release about $40,000 in donations to the Mental Health Association of Logansport after the MHA was notified its tax-exempt status was up to date.
The Internal Revenue Service notified MHA representatives early this month that the organization’s tax-exempt status had been automatically revoked erroneously in February. Through the end of this year, it’s covered by the 501(c)3 tax-exempt status maintained by the state Mental Health Association.
Donations made anytime this year are exempt from taxation, said Karen Waldron, executive director of the local association. She’ll be working with others at the association to issue donation receipts to supporters who donated goods or finances to the organization while its tax-exempt status was in question.
Once Jan. 1, 2013, rolls around, the state association’s tax exemption will no longer apply to the local association. By then, Waldron hopes to have 501(c)3 papers approved for the local organization’s own tax exemption.
“Back in May, we paid for our own 501(c)3 and got all the paperwork sent in and we’re just waiting to hear from the IRS on that,” Waldron said. “It keeps me up nights. I’m just praying that it’s going to come in.”
Linda Lance, the Logansport accountant who filed the 501(c)3 paperwork for the local association, said it’s typical for several months to pass between filing paperwork and receiving official notice that 501(c)3 status has been granted.
“There hasn’t been anything come in about that yet,” Lance said Wednesday.
The local association has asked the IRS to expedite processing its 501(c)3 paperwork, and Lance is not aware of any issues that would delay approval of the tax exemption.
But she’s not certain whether the exemption will be approved before the end of the year.
“We’ve sent it in, but we’ll see,” Lance said. “Right now we’re pretty happy with getting this.”
• Sarah Einselen is news editor for the Pharos-Tribune. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 574-732-5151.