Patch's Polls: How Much of Your Income Do You Give to Charity?

A new report shows that Connecticut residents residents rank 45th in the country in terms of how much of their income they donate.

Do you give a good amount of your money to charity? If you’re from Connecticut, then you’re in the minority.

New data released by The Chronicle of Philanthropy put Connecticut at 45th when calculating the percentage of one's discretionary income that went to a charitable cause.

State residents here give just 3.3 percent of their income to charity, which is still higher than the rest of New England, but much lower than other states like Alabama, Tennessee and Mississippi.

To see a breakdown by towns, click here.

The most charitable state was Utah, whose state residents gave over 10 percent of their discretionary income. Utah is a notably religious state, with the majority of its religious adhering to the Mormon faith.

Much of the data showed that residents from the least religious states are also the most stingiest with giving, and the residents from the more religious states are likely to give to charity.

The Chronicle based its data on charitable deductions based on by the Internal Revenue Service tax returns from 2008.

But for this very reason, Angela Powers of the Community Foundation of Greater New Haven, said analyzing charitable deductions can be deceiving.

According to The Associated Press, Powers noted that about half of all money to her organization comes in the form of estate gifts, which wouldn’t be reported in individual tax returns.

And it should be noted that Connecticut, overall, ranked 22 in terms of total contribution to charity, having given $2.3 billion in 2008.

Now it’s time to put you on the spot. How much money did you give last year? Take our poll and share your thoughts in the comments.

Jay August 21, 2012 at 08:55 PM
Define "Charity". Giving to your church is not "charity" - it is buying a pew and a place in whatever hereafter that group offers..
DisgruntledInClinton August 21, 2012 at 10:03 PM
Blue states give less, so CT's low giving makes sense, I guess. That and the fact that our taxes are so high- we give a lot less than we used to due to price of gas, food, and our worries about the economy.
Fran M. August 22, 2012 at 03:09 AM
I'd rather have the definition of "discretionary income". You know-- I never realized it until Jay cleared it up for me-- the reason I don't spend money on season tickets to my favorite sports team is because I'm reserving all that $$ for "reserved seats" at my religious affiliation's "hereafter place". And here I was, thinking that it was just a good act of kindness to offer my time, talent, and treasure to those in need around me, as well as my church community. How silly of me...
Jane Scully Welch August 22, 2012 at 11:17 AM
Blue State, red State....it is all the same....the economy is a worry...BUT...there is always a Clinton neighbor worse off than you...How many of you actually send a check or give a can of food to Families Helping Families? This group helps so many right here in Clinton.....collecting supplies for the Food Pantry...helping our neighbors out with getting oil to them...be they families with children or our beloved Seniors...think about it....and help!
Martin Shapiro August 22, 2012 at 12:56 PM
In the 2nd highest taxed state in the union, this doesn't surprise me.


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