Tuesday, June 19, 2018
News Roundup

Church of Scientology responds to questions about fundraising, tax exemption

Excerpts from the Church of Scientology's response, in the words of its spokeswoman, Karin Pouw:

Due to the unique nature of its ministry, the Church of Scientology has found that a donation system for participating in religious services is its most practical method of support. Scientology auditing and training require the time of and facilities for a large number of highly trained ministers and other staff, but the resources of Churches of Scientology are determined by its parishioners' level of support. Thus, churches seek financial support from those engaging in the religious services that require the greatest dedication of time and resources of the church. This donation system is the most fair and equitable method of accomplishing the religion's purposes.

• • •

All Church of Scientology fundraising practices were addressed by the United States Internal Revenue Service before ruling in 1993 that the Church and its related organizations were tax exempt. The IRS determined that the manner in which Churches of Scientology raise funds is indistinguishable from the fundraising practices of other major religions. The principal IRS concern was the church's eventual use of the funds raised and with respect to that issue, the IRS reached the conclusion that no funds are expended for the benefit of any church leader or other individual and that the church serves "exclusively religious and charitable purposes."

The church demonstrated specific projects it intended to fund through its present and anticipated future resources, and the IRS was satisfied that these plans reflected appropriate exempt religious purposes. In the almost 20 years since the exemption proceedings, the church has greatly surpassed those initial plans, including but by no means limited to the dozens of new Ideal Church buildings around the world. Contributions to Churches of Scientology in the United States are tax deductible, just as contributions to any other recognized church are deductible.

Courts examining the issue also have determined that the method of fundraising used by Scientology Churches is no different in substance from fundraising practices of other religions.

• • •

The Scientology financial contribution system is comparable to the financial systems of many other religions and does not differ in substance from donations by parishioners of other religions to secure access to worship and similar religious rituals in their respective faiths.

Comments
‘Papa! Papa!’ Audio of children stokes rage over separation

‘Papa! Papa!’ Audio of children stokes rage over separation

BROWNSVILLE, Texas — An audio recording that appears to capture the heartbreaking voices of small Spanish-speaking children crying out for their parents at a U.S. immigration facility took center stage Monday in the growing uproar over the Trump admi...
Updated: 12 minutes ago
Romano: A Tampa Bay 'superstar' caught in the crosshairs of Trump's border policy

Romano: A Tampa Bay 'superstar' caught in the crosshairs of Trump's border policy

At this moment, she is Tampa Bay’s most influential export. A smart, accomplished and powerful attorney making life-altering decisions on an international stage. But what of tomorrow? And the day after? When the story of President Donald Trum...
Updated: 15 minutes ago
The Daystarter: South Florida rapper gunned down; latest on the immigration controversy; the album we’ve all been waiting for

The Daystarter: South Florida rapper gunned down; latest on the immigration controversy; the album we’ve all been waiting for

Catching you up on overnight happenings, and what to know today.• It’s here: summer. Highs this week will all be in the 90s, with feels-like temperatures near 100 degrees, according to 10Weather WTSP.• As you head out for your morning commute, check...
Updated: 18 minutes ago
Up to 1,000 children held by immigration authorities now living in Homestead compound

Up to 1,000 children held by immigration authorities now living in Homestead compound

The Trump administration has reopened a 1,000-bed Homestead facility that once housed minors who entered the country illegally and alone, reviving a compound at a time when the White House is under fire for a new policy that separates children from p...
Updated: 26 minutes ago
Argument over dog leads to fatal shooting in Polk County

Argument over dog leads to fatal shooting in Polk County

A Fort Meade man was killed Monday night and two others were wounded after Polk County deputies say they approached a man while searching for a lost dog.The shooting occurred around 6:45 p.m. at the home of suspected shooter Charles Peddycoart, at 41...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Review: On ‘Everything Is Love,’ Beyonce and Jay-Z emerge from chaos defiant, triumphant

Review: On ‘Everything Is Love,’ Beyonce and Jay-Z emerge from chaos defiant, triumphant

In 2016 Beyoncé dropped Lemonade, a culture-quaking song cycle about her troubled marriage to Jay-Z, and more broadly about the black female experience in America. It was her best and most meaningful work, and it was nominated for Album of the Year a...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Rays DFA Rob Refsnyder to make room for Kevin Kiermaier

Rays DFA Rob Refsnyder to make room for Kevin Kiermaier

The Rays made official after Monday's game that CF Kevin Kiermaier would be activated on Tuesday.And to make room on the 40- and 25 man rosters, they designated for assignment OF Rob Refsnyder.Acquired from the Indians for cash considerations just be...
Updated: 6 hours ago
St. Petersburg residents will see higher water, sanitation bills

St. Petersburg residents will see higher water, sanitation bills

ST. PETERSBURG — Residents can expect their water and sanitation bills to increase between $7 and $11 starting in October.That represents an average of a 7-percent increase. Customers who use an average of 4,000 gallons a month, including reclaimed w...
Updated: 9 hours ago
Tampa’s budget is lean and straightforward this year, but trouble may be looming

Tampa’s budget is lean and straightforward this year, but trouble may be looming

TAMPA — Tampa City Council members have reacted to Mayor Bob Buckhorn’s cautious budget with their own hedge, saying the city’s financial outlook could turn if the national and regional economy goes south in the next few months.Buckhorn has said he w...
Published: 06/19/18
Rays journal: A 4-0 lead disappears in loss at Houston

Rays journal: A 4-0 lead disappears in loss at Houston

HOUSTON — The Rays brought up several of their top prospects so they can get as much experience as possible.And Monday that included seeing how the relentless defending champion Astros worked their way back from an early four-run deficit to sco...
Updated: 1 hour ago