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Charitable solicitation nets more in state

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Charities in North Carolina using paid solicitors raised more in the most recent fiscal year and kept more of what they raised, a new report says.

In the fiscal year ended June 30, 2007, charities using paid solicitors registered with the state reported nearly $265 million in gross receipts, says the report by the state Secretary of State’s Office.

Of that total, charities received 50.54 percent, and solicitation firms kept 49.46 percent.

By comparison, gross receipts totaled $194.1 million in 2005-06, with charities receiving 48.13 percent and solicitors keeping 51.87 percent.

In 2004-05, gross receipts totaled nearly $204.6 million, with charities receiving 55.3 percent and solicitors keeping 54.7 percent in 2004-05.

The actual amounts individual nonprofits netted from campaigns that paid solicitors conducted ranged from zero to 99.08 percent, the report says.

In a written statement, the Secretary of State’s Office says people “should not automatically condemn a charity and its professional solicitor if the data shows” their cause over the past year netted a low share of the funds the charities raised through paid solicitors.

“Sometimes extensive educational efforts are an integral part of their fundraising program as well, but that’s counted as part of the expenses, and additional money may come in after the campaign period ends,” Secretary of State Elaine Marshall says in the statement.

The Secretary of State’s Office licenses charities and nonprofits that use professional fundraising services for solicitation campaigns, compensate their officers, or raise at least $25,000 and are not exempt from state law because they are organizations such as religious institutions, volunteer fire departments or educational institutions.

The report includes contributions that charities may raise in other states, and does not include money that charities may raise on their own in addition to the funds they raise through paid solicitors.

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