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Bill would increase the charitable mileage rate to match the business rate

WASHINGTON, DC-U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) today introduced the Charitable Mileage Deduction Equity Act to address economic hardships and loss of volunteers faced by volunteer organizations due to high gas prices.  The bill would increase the rate of tax deductions available to volunteers who use their personal vehicles for charitable work.  

“In these tough economic times when all Americans are struggling with the rising costs of food and gas, non-profit charities are experiencing a decline in volunteers because people cannot afford to deliver goods to those who need it most,” said Senator Casey.  “Charitable services are in even greater need today.  The loss of volunteers can be crippling to their ability to serve their communities and we must help to prevent that from happening.”

Federal law determines how much of a deduction a citizen can make on his or her federal income tax return for mileage driven on a personal vehicle for charitable purposes.  

The current rate for charitable mileage is 14 cents per mile.  It has gone unchanged for 11 years, while the business mileage rate has increased twice in less than one year.  In January, the business mileage rate, which is determined by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), increased to 50.5 cents per mile.  As gas prices rose, the IRS increased the business mileage rate to 58.5 cents per mile.

Senator Casey’s legislation would link the charitable mileage deduction rate to the business mileage deduction rate of 58.5 cents per mile.  As the IRS adjusts the business rate to respond to changing fuel prices, the charitable mileage deduction rate would change in tandem with it.

A similar bill, H.R. 2020, was introduced in the House of Representatives by Congressman Todd Platts (R-PA).

The bill is supported by America’s Second Harvest, the Pennsylvania Association of Nonprofit Organizations, the Pennsylvania Association of Regional Foodbanks and the Pennsylvania Hunger Action Center.