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University of Idaho Foundation

FAQS

Why does the University of Idaho need private gifts?
Why is the Foundation separate from the University?
What does the Foundation do with contributions?
How is the Foundation accountable?
What are the tax benefits of making a gift to the University of Idaho?
What if I receive goods and services in connection with my gift?
Can I give something besides cash?
How can faculty or staff at the University of Idaho contribute?
Who governs the Foundation?
Does the Foundation make grants?
What services does the Foundation provide to the University?
What is the Consolidated Investment Trust (CIT)?
Are there gift fees?


Why does the University of Idaho need private gifts?
Private investment support is extremely important to the University of Idaho particularly in these turbulent economic times as state support continues to decline. The state of Idaho takes great pride in the University of Idaho, the only land grant college in the nation established before the state it resides in, and provides as much support as it can. Approximately 35% of the total budget comes from the state's general fund. Private support helps leverage the state, federal and research funds to allow the University of Idaho to provide exceptional teaching, learning and research opportunities.

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Why is the Foundation separate from the University of Idaho?
The vast majority of American public colleges and universities have separate Foundations, organized as not-for-profit 501 C ( 3 ) corporations, as does the University of Idaho, and for good reasons: confidentiality of personal documents related to gifts such as wills, trust agreements and correspondence; stewardship of endowment funds to ensure the joint goals of growth and return are met in the best interest of the donors; and to provide flexibility through discretionary funds to the growth of programs of excellence at the University of Idaho. 

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What does the Foundation do with contributions?
The Foundation does exactly what the donors ask us to do with their gifts. The majority of gifts are "restricted" to a particular endowment, college, department or program. We deposit these gifts into accounts established at the request of donors, administrators, deans, department chairs or program managers to hold gift funds. You will see that designation confirmed on the gift receipt and thank you note sent to you after the gift was received. Unrestricted gifts are used at the direction of the President, and are expensed to support programs or efforts which are current priorities of the University of Idaho. Restricted gift money is spent by the administrator, faculty or staff directly in charge of the account. After the Foundation ensures that there are guidelines established for the account, the Foundation transfers the funds to a university gift account. The University of Idaho is then responsible to ensure that the funds are spent in accordance with the account guidelines. 

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How is the Foundation accountable?
The University of Idaho Foundation, Inc. is committed to retaining both public and private trust. The Foundation openly discloses information about financial statements, fundraising priorities, and other information that helps further an understanding of the mission and goals.

Each year, the Foundation books are fully audited, and the organization complies with literally hundreds of regulatory requirements at the federal, state and local level. 

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What are the tax benefits of making a gift to the University of Idaho through the foundation?
Your gift is tax-deductible as specified in the IRS regulations. The University of Idaho Foundation, Inc. is registered as a charitable organization with the State of Idaho Secretary of State. Gifts of securities may have additional tax-benefits, as can bequests, trusts, and other life income gifts. 

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What if I receive goods and services in connection with my gift?
The IRS requires that we inform you, via your gift receipt/acknowledgement, of the value of any goods or services you may have received along with the resulting value of your contribution. 

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May I give something besides cash?
The University of Idaho Foundation, Inc. accepts many types of non-cash gifts, including:
  • Publicly traded securities
    The value of your stock gift depends upon the market value at the time the gift is made. On the day that the stock is transferred into a University of Idaho Foundation, Inc. account, the stock is valued at the average between the high and low of that day.
  • Real property
    The Foundation has the ability to accept gifts of real estate. The majority of the property is sold to fund the philanthropic interest of the donor. However, in an agreement that is reached between the foundation, the university and the donor, some property is retained to be used by the university in support of a specific programmatic area. Real property gifts must be approved and accepted by the Gift Acceptance Committee of the University of Idaho Foundation, Inc.
  • Personal property
    The Foundation has the ability to accept gifts of personal property, such as books, artwork, computers, etc. as they relate to the mission of the university. Significant collections are accepted with an accompanying endowment fund designed to support the archiving and enrichment opportunities provided by the gift.
  • Memorial or honorary contributions
    Many donors choose to honor their loved ones by making a gift. We will notify the honoree or their family members of your generosity.
  • Wills and trusts
    The Gift Planning Services staff can help you and your advisors design a bequest, a charitable trust or fund an annuity that returns a life income to you or your heirs.
  • Corporate matching gifts
    Many employers will match gifts made by their employees to the University of Idaho Foundation, Inc., doubling or even tripling your gift.

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How can faculty or staff at the University of Idaho contribute?
It's always special when one of the closest members of the University of Idaho "family" supports the programs they are helping to provide. In addition to any of the other gifting vehicles, faculty and staff may make contributions to any Foundation fund through payroll deduction. 

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Who governs the University of Idaho Foundation, Inc.?
The Board of Directors is comprised of up to 25 business, professional and civic leaders who govern the University of Idaho Foundation, Inc. These outstanding volunteers contribute their time, experience and resources, serving with no compensation. The Board of Directors meets three times annually. Several Board members chair committees and meet between sessions of the Board of Directors. The Foundation offices are located at 714 W. State Street, Suite 240, Boise, Idaho 83702 and 1210 Blake Avenue, 875 Perimeter Drive MS 3143 Moscow, ID 83844-3143.

The directors provide external oversight to the Foundation's operation, with the Executive Director of the Foundation reporting directly to the board. The directors embrace the values of the University of Idaho, and reflect in their membership the geographic, gender and cultural diversity of our alumni and friends. 

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Does the Foundation make grants?
The University of Idaho Foundation, Inc. is a fundraising vs. a fund-granting not-for-profit. Although our endowment funds are significant, they are all "restricted" to benefit a specific use - making them unavailable to other programs. 

University of Idaho faculty or staff looking for specific project funding should first contact their Dean or development officer, and request adding that project onto the unit's fundraising goals that are given to the President for consideration. Advice on securing non-philanthropic grant funds can be found on the University of Idaho Research Office web site.

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What services does the Foundation provide to the University of Idaho?
The University of Idaho Foundation, Inc.'s mission is to secure, manage and distribute private support to enhance the growth and development of the University of Idaho. 

In partnership with the University of Idaho, the Foundation supports University priorities, assists in providing central services to support fundraising, endowment management, administration, and compliance. 

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The Consolidated Investment Trust (CIT) is a pooled endowment fund managed by the University of Idaho Foundation, Inc., for the benefit of the University of Idaho. Scholarships, research, performing arts, lectureships, and many other programs of the University are supported by the CIT endowment earnings. 

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Are there gift fees?
The University of Idaho and the University of Idaho Foundation, Inc., continue to work together to keep administrative and other costs as low as possible.

The following assessments will be effective July 1, 2013:
  • A gift assessment of 5% on all new gifts.  (For public universities, the national average is over 5%)
  • The Foundation's Consolidated Investment Trust (CIT) endowment pool will be assessed 1% annually to cover the cost of managing and investing the fund.  (The national average is 1.3%)
These assessments will fund the administration of the Foundation and the strategic investments the University needs to engage our external constituents, tell our important story broadly, and raise critically needed private contributions.

Assessments are critical and essential for the University of Idaho to continue our commitment to excellence.

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