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Does Violence Policy Center represent the People? (Part 2)
Austin Gun Rights Examiner ^ | 1 May, 2009 | Howard Nemerov

Posted on 05/02/2009 7:19:45 AM PDT by marktwain

The previous article examined how Violence Policy Center (VPC) had to downsize in recent years in order to survive, due to significant decreases in “direct public support.” Because VPC has no public membership revenues, the term “direct public support” is misleading.

Two people perform most of VPC’s public outreach: Executive Director Josh Sugarman and Legislative Director Kristen Rand. Between 2003 and 2007, as revenues decreased 49.9%, both Sugarman’s and Rand’s salaries increased 5.9%. But because revenues decreased, these two top earners––each of whom earned $132,894 in salary and $3,987 in benefits in 2007––went from 15.5% of total revenue in 2003 to 32.7% in 2007, more than doubling their slice of the pie (111.3% increase).

Having just two employees taking home about one-third of total revenue may not be a long-term success strategy for a normal business, but it works when normal profitability concerns don’t exist.

To understand the financial circumstances of VPC, one must understand their definition of “public support,” which accounted for 91.8% of VPC’s total revenue between 2003 and 2007.And to understand VPC’s “public support,” one must understand the Joyce Foundation, because VPC’s primary “public donor” is the Joyce Foundation.

At the Joyce Foundation site, selecting “Gun Violence” on their “Grant List” page displays a roster of Who’s Who in gun control: e.g. Violence Policy Center, Mayors Fund to Advance New York City, Illinois Council Against Handgun Violence. Joyce Foundation spent $9,475,883 on gun control research between 2005 and 2007.

By comparison, the entire gun rights industry contributed a total of $3,188,704 for the four years of the 2006 and 2008 election cycles.

An examination of the Joyce Foundation’s 2006-7 financial statement shows no line item for membership dues or individual contributions. Their income is derived from investments: e.g. stocks, bonds, and real estate. The seed money for their grants came from Beatrice Joyce Kean in the 1970s, when she left the Foundation over $100 million. By year-end 2007, Joyce’s portfolio was valued at $931,643,665, an increase of $27,871,329 over 2006.

Joyce Foundation is exempt from federal income taxes because it is a 501 (c)(3) organization, defined as follows:

To be tax-exempt under section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code, an organization must be organized and operated exclusively for exempt purposes set forth in section 501(c)(3), and none of its earnings may inure to any private shareholder or individual.

In addition, it may not be an action organization, i.e., it may not attempt to influence legislation as a substantial part of its activities and it may not participate in any campaign activity for or against political candidates. [Emphasis added]

Furthermore, “exempt purposes” are defined as follows: The exempt purposes set forth in section 501(c)(3) are charitable, religious, educational, scientific, literary, testing for public safety, fostering national or international amateur sports competition, and preventing cruelty to children or animals.

The term charitable is used in its generally accepted legal sense and includes relief of the poor, the distressed, or the underprivileged; advancement of religion; advancement of education or science; erecting or maintaining public buildings, monuments, or works; lessening the burdens of government; lessening neighborhood tensions; eliminating prejudice and discrimination; defending human and civil rights secured by law; and combating community deterioration and juvenile delinquency. [Emphasis added]

Since all the “gun violence” grantees are demonstrably anti-rights, it appears that Joyce Foundation not only doesn’t defend the civil right of self-defense, but discriminates against law-abiding gun owners.

In 2003, of the $1,507,016 in “public support” received by VPC, $500,000 (33.2%) came from the Joyce Foundation. In 2004, VPC received another $500,000 from the Joyce Foundation, but due to decreases from other sources of “public support,” the Foundation’s share rose to 60.1%. In 2005, as revenues decreased again, the Joyce Foundation chipped in another $450,000, increasing their share of VPC’s “public support” to 68.1%. Because VPC received an 18 month grant in 2006 and a one-year grant in 2007, the two years combined results in Joyce providing VPC 92.3% of its total “public support.”

In just four years, the Joyce Foundation nearly tripled (178.2% growth) its share of VPC’s “public support” and more than tripled (219.4% growth) its share of VPC’s total revenues from 29.9% in 2003 to 95.5% in 2006-7.

This increasing share of financial support shows that the Violence Policy Center is the public mouthpiece of the Joyce Foundation’s agenda, which is to destroy your civil right of self-defense. It is also clear that their favored policies represent the wishes of a few well-paid VPC employees and the Joyce Foundation’s board of directors, and not the American People.

References VPC and Joyce Foundation numbers compiled from IRS Tax Forms 990. Email request for spreadsheet.

TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Extended News; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: banglist; democrats; funding; public; vpc
Excellent work by Howard Nemerov. I would love to see a book on how the Joyce Foundation was taken over by dedicated leftists.
1 posted on 05/02/2009 7:19:45 AM PDT by marktwain
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To: marktwain

FYI, I went to the Brady Bunch site and looked at their latest annual report. Both the Brady Campaign and the Brady Center showed $4 million+ each in revenues, the vast majority from contributions and memberships. There is no detail on contributions, but I’m amazed those two orgs could pull over $8 million/year from concerned citizens.

2 posted on 05/02/2009 8:06:48 AM PDT by umgud (I'm really happy I wasn't aborted)
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To: umgud
“but I’m amazed those two orgs could pull over $8 million/year from concerned citizens.”

I suspect that most of the $8 mil comes from leftist foundations and billionaires.

3 posted on 05/02/2009 8:26:40 AM PDT by marktwain
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To: marktwain

Isn’t that how celebrities get around paying taxes? They create personal foundations for charity which in most cases is just a tax dodge.

4 posted on 05/02/2009 8:29:57 AM PDT by freekitty (Give me back my conservative vote.)
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