Nonprofitxpress roundup – AmeriCorps probe underway

Compiled by Donnie Stanley

Here are the latest nonprofit headlines:

*AmeriCorps, a national volunteer program, has frozen recruitment and reassigned some managers while the inspector general of the Corporation for National Service investigates possible misuse of funds after discovering a shortage of money in the trust fund used to support educational grants for volunteers, The New York Times reported Dec. 10.

*Despite a steep decline in his personal wealth, CNN Founder Ted Turner will honor his 1997 pledge to give $1 billion to the United Nations Foundation, but will pay the remaining $500 million over 10 years instead of five, The New York Times reported Dec. 11.

*To help stem accounting and processing costs, United Way of Chicago hopes to merge with United Way of Suburban Chicago, a move United Way of America says could lower expenses and save the two groups $3.5 million to $8 million, The New York Times reported Dec. 7. 

*With private donations plunging to $4 million from $16 million last year, United Way of the National Capital Area has extended its annual fund indefinitely, The Washington Post reported Dec. 9. Officials, who had planned to end the drive in late December, attribute the poor results to the year-long controversy over the group’s management and spending.

*Reacting to the Bush administration crackdown on charities suspected of aiding terrorist groups, U.S. Muslims shifted their giving patterns during the holy month of Ramadan that ended Dec. 5, giving less support to mosques and international humanitarian charities and instead making anonymous or cash gifts to groups that defend Muslim civil liberties, The Washington Post reported Dec. 7.

*Nonprofits are still giving pay increases to their highest-paid employees, usually the boss, despite lower stock portfolios and a 78 percent drop in profits, according to a survey of 200 U.S. charities by Forbes magazine.

*Contributions to most U.S. nonprofit groups either fell or remained stable in the first 10 months of 2002, compared to the same period in 2001, according to a survey by GuideStar.

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