The University of Oregon joined with other higher education institutions and charitable groups in urging Congress to make the IRA charitable rollover permanent. The IRA charitable rollover provision allows individuals who have reached age 70-½ to donate up to $100,000 directly from their Individual Retirement Account (IRA) to charitable organizations, without treating the distributions as taxable income. Oregon Senator Ron Wyden, chair of the Senate Finance Committee, championed the permanent extension of the charitable rollover, calling on the House to send a package to the Senate. However, the House failed to approve under suspension of the rules the Supporting America's Charities Act (H.R. 5806), which would have provided a permanent extension. The measure fell by a vote of 275 to 149, short of the two-thirds majority needed to approve it under suspension. The House did pass a one year extension of the charitable rollover on December 12 as part of a one year tax extenders package. Senate leadership has indicated that it will act on the House package before adjourning for the winter recess.
Charitable giving plays an important role in the funding scholarships and faculty support. The availability of a deduction (as opposed to a penalty) for the rollover for IRA charitable donations increases charitable giving through this means.