On September 24, 2012, the Internal Revenue Service proposed long-awaited regulatory changes that would significantly modify regulations on equivalency determination in cross-border grantmaking. This is the result of years of work on the part of the Council on Foundations, TechSoup Global, and key allies—including many Council members—to create a more conducive environment for cross-border grantmaking by U.S. private foundations and public charities.
Although additional work remains to be done, these regulatory changes are a very strong step in resolving this long-term effort. In the near future, the Council and TechSoup Global hope to be able to launch NGOsource, an equivalency determination service that will help U.S. grantmakers streamline their international giving.
To set the context, this is arguably the most important thing to happen on the global grantmaking regulatory front in two decades. Unlike much philanthropic advocacy work, which seeks to defend a current position, this change pushes the boundaries on global grantmaking outward. According to Council board member Chet Tchozewski, founder of Global Greengrants Fund, “This ambitious, creative development in global philanthropy will save millions of dollars annually that can now be used for global public benefit.”
A conference call briefing was held on October 5. Janne Gallagher, the Council’s senior vice president and general counsel; Sheila Warren of TechSoup Global and NGOsource; and Marc Owens of Caplin & Drysdale offered comments and answered questions. Listen to a recording of the briefing.
The Council on Foundations and TechSoup Global submitted comments on the proposed regulations to the Treasury Department on December 21, 2012.