Time running out to take school tax credit

If you're going to pay income tax to the state on your 2008 return, you have just a few weeks to donate that payment directly to Grand Canyon School instead.

Last year, taxpayers here donated about $11,270, which included funding field trips, Odyssey of the Mind, Hands Across the Border, sports, Camp Colton and more.

Donations can go to school-sponsored extracurricular activities requiring a participation fee. Programs here include band, outdoor education, yearbook, National Art Honor Society, Outdoor Club and sports.

You don't have to have children in the school system - or at all - to take the credit. Married taxpayers filing jointly can donate up to $400 while single taxpayers may claim up to $200.

Those wishing to donate are not required to have children. Anyone with or without children, married or single, is eligible to take advantage of this tax credit. The $400 maximum state tax credit is available for taxpayers that are married and filing jointly.

A husband and wife that file separate returns for a taxable year in which they could have filed a joint return may each claim $200.

For a single individual or a head of household, the tax credit is $200. You may donate less than $400 and still be eligible to receive the state tax credit in the amount of your donation.

"With the budget cuts, field trips are usually the first activities to be put on the back burner. Art, Music and Athletics would also benefit from Tax Credit monies," said Judi Beckerleg of the school business office.

To qualify for 2008, donations must be postmarked no later than Dec. 31. For more information on eligible programs at Grand Canyon or to make a donation, call Grand Canyon School at 638-2461, ext. 400.

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