TRENTON, N.J. – The Assembly Human Services Committee today advanced a bill (A5513) sponsored by Assemblyman Ron Dancer to allow taxpayers to make contributions to Meals on Wheels programs in the state through their income tax return forms.
“Person-to-person giving is a more beneficial and civically minded form of charity than any government program,” said Dancer (R-Ocean). “This bill shows that we are not a government with communities, but that we live in communities that have a government.”
Under the bill, taxpayers will be able to make voluntary contributions to a “Meals on Wheels in New Jersey Fund” on their income tax return forms to support local programs in providing meals to homebound seniors.
One in five Americans are aged 60 or older and one in four live alone. Nearly 9.5 million seniors are threatened by hunger. About 16 percent of New Jerseyans are 65 and older.
“Not only does Meals on Wheels help meet the nutritional needs of seniors throughout the state, they support their social well-being too,” said Dancer. “Seniors on a limited income, living far away from family or recovering from an illness need our help to live healthy, happy and independent lives. This bill will help Meals on Wheels continue to fulfill their very important mission.”
New Jersey’s income tax returns typically generate around $700,000 a year in donations for more than 30 different causes.
The Senate version of the bill (S463) passed unanimously in March.