The Endow Iowa Tax Credit Program was created by the Iowa Legislature in 2003 to encourage philanthropy for the benefit of Iowa citizens. Endow Iowa is part of an effort to enhance philanthropic activity in the State of Iowa by encouraging contributions to community foundations. The program provides significant additional tax incentives for individual, business or organizational donors of community foundations.

The Endow Iowa Tax Credit Program includes a tax incentive program administered by the Iowa Economic Development Authority. By applying for the Endow Iowa Tax Credits, individuals, businesses and financial institutions can receive a State of Iowa tax credit equal to 25% of their eligible donations to a permanently endowed fund at a qualified community foundation or affiliate foundation (including The Community Foundation North Lee County). This Iowa tax credit is in addition to normal federal charitable deductions. Please note: A donor may not take both a state charitable deduction and receive the state tax credit for the same donation.

Endow Iowa strengthens communities through philanthropy. Endow Iowa endorses the importance of philanthropy and encourages all Iowans to invest in their communities through endowment funds. These funds are permanent resources that build the capacity for communities to become self-sufficient by providing financial support to charitable projects and community betterment programs now and in the future.

How Endow Iowa Works For You...

  • A variety of gifts qualify for Endow Iowa Tax Credits including cash, real estate, appreciated securities and outright gifts of retirement assets.
  • Only gifts to qualified permanent endowment funds benefiting Iowa charitable causes are eligible to receive the tax credits.
  • Tax credits of 25% of the gifted amount are limited to $300,000 in tax credits per individual for a gift of $1.2 million or $600,000 in tax credits per couple for a gift of $2.4 million if both are Iowa taxpayers.
  • Eligible gifts will qualify for credits on a first-come/first-serve basis until the yearly appropriated limit is reached, currently $6 million. If the current available Endow Iowa Tax Credits have been awarded, qualified donors will be eligible for the next year's Endow Iowa Tax Credits. The Community Foundation encourages donors to act early in the year to ensure they receive Endow Iowa credits.
  • All qualified donors can carry forward the tax credit for up to five years after the year the donation was made.


2023 Endow Iowa Tax Credits

Due to the generosity of donors across Iowa, 2023 credits available through the Endow Iowa 25% state tax credit program have been expended (as of October 1, 2021. Endow Iowa eligible gifts will now be placed on a waiting list to receive a 2023 credit.

Tax credits are issued on a first come, first served basis, and we encourage donors to make gifts early in 2021-2022 to help ensure they receive the 2023 credit. Donors have five years to carry-forward the credit. If you have any questions, please call our office at 319.670.0207.

Explaining Endow Iowa
Angela Dethlefs-Trettin, former President of the Iowa Council of Foundations, discussed Endow Iowa with DSM Magazine. See the video below for Angela's 2 minute explanation on how Endow Iowa works, its successes and the impact it is leveraging in local communities.

Endow Iowa Tax Calculator

Gift to Endowment                   $1,000     $10,000     $100,000  

Endow Iowa Tax Credit (25%)    ($250)     ($2,500)     ($25,000)

Net Federal Deductible Gift        $750       $7,500       $75,000   

Federal tax savings*              ($277.50)    ($2,770)    ($27,750) 

Net cost of gift                      $472.50      $4,725     $47,250   

*The above illustration assumes an individual or married couple is in the 37% federal tax bracket.



What Does it Really Cost to Give?

Tax credits are offered on a first come, first served basis, with $6 million available annually statewide. Giving through the community foundation to the causes you care about is rewarding—in more ways than one. Your gift creates lasting change in the community, and the Endow Iowa Tax Credit Program offers you generous tax incentives to make it easier for you to give more for less.

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