On Monday, the MLK Day of Service, Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams, along with State Senator Martin Malavé Dilan and Assemblymember Erik Martin Dilan, introduced a bill that would extend a tax credit to New Yorker residents who volunteer.
Under Adams’ proposal, which is being carried in the New York State Legislature by Sen. Dilan and Assemblymember Dilan, residents that volunteer at least 25 hours during a year for established 501(c)(3) organizations, or organizations affiliated with NY Cares or NYC Service, would receive a tax credit equal to $200 a year.
“Every day, we see that volunteerism is a core tenet of community and neighborhood development,” said Adams. “That truth is never more evident than on the observance of Martin Luther King Jr.’s birthday, a man whose legacy calls us all to service.
In 2013, there were nearly three million volunteers in New York State, according to Volunteering and Civic Life in America. The number of volunteer hours per New York State resident approached 26 hours a year. Compared to volunteer data from 2003, this represents a drop of almost 12 percent in the number of volunteers and a drop of 26 percent in the number of volunteer hours per New York State resident.
Additionally, as of 2013, New York State ranked second-to-last out of all 50 states and the District of Columbia in the percentage of residents that volunteer: 19.7 percent of New Yorkers volunteer, compared to 26.5 percent of all Americans.
“Organizations that rely on volunteer support, groups that are already stretched thin for resources as they work to help out the most underserved among us, would benefit greatly from this tax incentive proposal, getting the manpower and woman power they need to fulfill their worthy missions of service to our communities,” said Adams.