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Goodwill says season is a good time to give

December 12, 2006

Make room for your holiday gifts, de-clutter your home and give your gently used clothing and other unwanted items to Horizon Goodwill Industries - and claim a tax deduction to get a little money back from Uncle Sam.

Cleaning out your closet is an easy way to invest in your community and at the same time get a tax break, Goodwill said in a press release.

"Thanks to your donations, last year Goodwill across the nation helped someone find a job every 57 seconds of every business day," Goodwill said.

It said that with passage of the Pension Protection Act in August, there are new rules about claiming tax deductions for charitable donations.

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For cash contributions, donors "must show a receipt from the charity, a canceled check or credit card statement to prove their donation, and may not claim a deduction if they cannot provide supporting documentation," Goodwill said.

It said that for material donations, "donors may claim a deduction only for items that are in good condition. For items worth more than $500, a qualified appraisal must accompany the claim."

Goodwill said a good rule of thumb to follow when determining the condition of something you want to donate is to consider whether or not you would give it to a relative or a friend. "If the answer is yes, then it's fit to donate and most likely in good condition," the organization said.

Goodwill accepts clothing, household items, toys, furniture, collectibles, art and small kitchen appliances.

Items are sold in Goodwill stores for the benefit of Goodwill's job training and career services.

Donations are accepted at an attended donation site at 151 N. Burhans Boulevard in Hagerstown, or at any of Horizon Goodwill Industries' stores in Berkeley Springs, Charles Town, Martinsburg and Keyser in West Virginia; Greencastle and Waynesboro in Pennsylvania; Cumberland, Hagerstown, LaVale and Grantsville in Maryland; and in Winchester, Va.

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