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Your Help is Needed - Take Action Today!

Posted by National Association of Charitable Gift Planners on Mar 31, 2017 11:13:20 AM

 

H.R. 1337 –Legacy IRA Act was introduced and referred to the House Committee on Ways and Means. The purpose of the bill is to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to expand tax-free distributions from individual retirement accounts to include rollovers for charitable life-income plans for charitable purposes.

The bill was introduced by Representative Kevin Cramer of North Dakota and currently has four cosponsors; all members of the Ways and Means Committee.

Cosponsors:
        Rep. Blumenauer, Earl [D-OR-3]
        Rep. Tiberi, Patrick J. [R-OH-12]
        Rep. Paulsen, Erik [R-MN-3]
        Rep. Noem, Kristi L. [R-SD-At Large]

Now is the time to bring this bill to the attention of your representative and ask them to cosponsor the bill. If your representative is a member of the House Committee on Ways and Means, these members of the House are of particular importance because of their role in preparing tax legislation.

To help build support for the Legacy IRA Act and encourage Congress to move on this legislation, CGP is asking all members to participate over the coming weeks and reach out to their United States Representatives and ask them to join H.R. 1337 as cosponsors.  During Congressional recesses, Representatives are back in their home districts and set aside time to meet with community leaders on issues presently before Congress. Below is the schedule of spring recesses and all the tools you need to set an in person meeting or send correspondence to your representative. This is an important time to gain support for this bill.  Please take action today.

        Spring Recess Dates

         April 8-23

         May 5-15

         May 26 – June 5

 

How to Contact Your Local Representative

☑ STEP 1:  IDENTIFY YOUR UNITED STATES REPRESENTATIVE

Visit the House of Representatives website and click on “Find Your Representative.”  Enter your zip code (or street address) to determine who represents you.  Follow the link to your Representative’s website.  Take note of your Representative’s district office location nearest you and look for the contact information.

 

☑ STEP 2:  REQUEST A MEETING

Contact the district office location nearest you by telephone.  State your name, title and organization, as well as your affiliation with CGP, and explain that you would like to meet with your Representative during a spring recess.  Odds are you will be sent to a staffer’s voicemail or asked to leave a message with the receptionist.  Some offices may require that you submit a written request for a meeting.  If so, there is a link to a sample letter below.  Other offices may direct you to an on-line request form. 

Example Written Request

After leaving a message or sending a written request for a meeting, make sure to call the office to follow-up.  If your Representative can meet with you, confirm the exact time and location of the meeting.  If your Representative is unable to meet with you, request to meet with a staffer.  Be persistent, and remember that most Representatives set aside time during recesses to meet with constituents about issues of concern.

 

☑ STEP 3:  MEET WITH YOUR REPRESENTATIVE (OR A STAFFER)

Once your meeting is set, take time to browse the website of your Representative.  Read the Representative’s biography, recent press releases, and any position statements.  What issues seem to be most important to the Representative?  Does anything in the biography resonate with your organization or you personally?  Knowing this information will help you during your meeting.

During the meeting refer to the suggested talking points below.  Beyond the specifics of the bill, however, take great care to explain how your organization – and the population your organization serves – would benefit from an expanded IRA Rollover.  Conclude the meeting by asking your Representative to join the Legacy IRA Act as a cosponsor. 

If questions come up during the meeting that you don’t know the answer to, don’t worry.  Simply explain that you don’t have that information at present and promise to follow-up.  Your Representative (or their staffer) doesn’t expect you to be an expert on the legislation, just a constituent who is passionate about the topic at hand. Linked below are some sample talking points

Sample Talking Points

 

☑ STEP 4:  FOLLOW-UP

Send a thank you letter that reinforces your request that your Representative join the Legacy IRA Act as a cosponsor.  See sample text below.  If you promised to follow-up with any specific information, make sure to do so.  Contact CGP if you need help answering any questions that arise during a meeting. Below is a sample thank you letter.

Sample Thank You Letter

 

☑ STEP 5:  SHARE YOUR EXPERIENCES AND ACTIVITIES

Share with members in the Advocacy Group on CGP Link what you learned and what was discussed in your meetings and phone conversations. Sharing your experiences and insights will help all of us learn more about what obstacles exist and what resonates with legislators. 

 

SPECIAL NOTE:

If your schedule does not permit you to meet with your Representative, you are concerned that your Representative has already met with individuals on the Legacy IRA Act, or you simply feel your Representative’s office is more informal in nature, consider making a phone call, faxing a letter, or sending an email.

Phone – Contact your Representative’s DC office (not the district office) by phone and ask to speak with the staffer who handles tax issues.  Use the talking points provided above to request that your Representative join H.R. 1337 as a cosponsor.

Fax – Drafting a letter and faxing it to your Representative remains one of the most effective forms of grassroots advocacy.  Customize the sample text provided above and fax the letter to your Representative at his/her DC office.  The letter should find its way to the staffer who handles tax issues.  Follow-up with a phone call to ensure your letter is received and considered.

E-mail – Most Representatives have electronic forms on their websites that allow their constituents to quickly email letters about pressing legislative issues.  Simply customize the sample text provided above, paste it into the form, and click send.

Topics: Advocacy