Non-Profits Election Spending

Expected to Increase

Over 100 nonprofits spent about $95 million dollars compared to $65 million spent by super PACs in the 2010 election. So says a recent joint investigation by the Center for Public Integrity and the Center for Responsive Politics. And, conservative “social welfare” nonprofits outspent their liberal counterparts by almost 5-to-1.

A big reason why nonprofit spending outpaced super PAC spending is that super PACs must reveal their contributors’ identities, but nonprofits don’t. In fact, almost 90 percent of nonprofit spending was made by groups that didn’t publicly disclose their funders, according to Federal Election Commission data.

So while super PACs have spent over $120 million to date in the 2012 election cycle and nonprofits have spent only about $9 million, the gap in spending is expected to close now that the candidates have been named.

The 2010 midterm election was the first time outside groups were permitted to accept unlimited contributions from corporations, unions and wealthy individuals to spend on ads supporting or opposing candidates, leading to the formation of super PACs.

Nonprofits are legally allowed to spend significant sums of money on electioneering and lobbying — so long as electoral politics isn’t a group’s primary purpose.

In addition, nonprofits must report their expenses to the Federal Election Commission if their:

•   advertisements expressly advocate for or against federal candidates,

•   broadcast ads mention a federal candidate within 30 days of a primary or 60 days of a general election, but don’t overtly urge viewers to elect or defeat that candidate,

•   internal political communications target a group’s own members.

Three conservative groups accounted for more than half of all such spending in the 2010 elections: the American Action Network, Crossroads Grassroots Policy Strategies and the American Future Fund. These groups will be major players in the 2012 election with Crossroads GPS, along with American Crossroads, spending as much as $300 million according to the groups. 

The World’s Largest Technology Conference

for Nonprofits Gears Up

More than 2,000 are expected to converge on the Gaylord National Hotel and Convention Center in Washington, D.C. September 30 to October 2 for BBCON 2012.

BBCON 2012 will combine with the annual Convio Summit to creating an even larger gathering of nonprofit professionals and partners. The focus is professional development, hands-on training and networking. The goals are to provide new technology, best practices and actionable strategies for attendees.

The sessions are segmented into the following categories: analytics, arts and cultural, constituent relationship management (CRM), K-12 education, financial management, fundraising, interactive, and personal and professional development.

Housing Trends Indicate that

Multi-generational U.S. Households are on the Rise

According to Generations United, a nonprofit organization focused on intergenerational issues, one in six Americans currently lives in a home with more than two generations of family.

Between 2007 and 2009, the number of multi-generational households went from 46.5 million to 51.4 million—a 10.5 percent increase. Put another way, multigenerational homes represented 12 percent of the U.S. population in 1980 but today they represent 16.1 percent.

The five top reasons for this, according to Generations United, are:

•   young adults are marrying later in life,

•   baby boomers can afford to house both their parents and children,

•   economic conditions necessitate the sharing of expenses,

•   sick people need in-home care,

•   an influx of immigrants with a cultural tradition of extended family living in a home.

Home builders have acknowledged this trend by building new homes that accommodate these larger families. For example, Schumacher Homes, a builder of custom homes, reports that in-law units and dual suites are becoming more popular. These offer private living spaces and separate bathrooms.

Schumacher Homes also predicts that homeowners will value separate rooms meant for entertaining. These spaces can be versatile, providing a space for hobbies during one time period, and being re-purposed during another.

 Community Hospital Trends: Healthcare Transactions and Consolidations

In an effort to meet evolving healthcare standards and patient needs, nonprofit community hospitals are engaging in partnerships, affiliations and mergers with larger hospitals and health systems.

Benefits—Community hospitals emphasize the long-term benefits they offer those they serve. In connection with this, their trustees seek affiliations with other healthcare providers that improve a hospital’s operations and that facilitate reinvestment in the hospital and its community.

The benefits are often written into contracts that underscore the commitment hospitals make to their communities—even guaranteeing the continuation of some line items when communities relinquish their hospital ownership. For example, hospital departments could be obligated to remain open for specified times and meet set quality standards even after an ownership change.

Post-transaction governance—Contracts today often facilitate smooth transitions from community-owned to privately-held hospitals. This may include retaining a say in who is appointed to a hospital’s board of directors and how the hospital is operated after a community is no longer the majority owner.

Non-profits Growing—Hospital and healthcare systems are more inclined now to partner with a nonprofit community hospital than before. This is evident by the success nonprofits have had in expanding and developing their services via associations with private facilities. Nonprofits offer options that are often not available elsewhere for private healthcare providers, making them attractive partners.

P2R Associates  248-348-2464  •  •