Gift to the Gladys Porter Zoo
It is possible for you
to make a significant gift in support of the Zoo and
its efforts and benefits from earning secure income
with generous tax savings.
UNRESTRICTED Gifts "without strings" enable
the Zoo to take advantage of unexpected opportunities,
to support projects and good ideas not eligible for
funding from other sources and to support smaller
projects that are innovated and worthy but unlikely
to attract the attention of foundations and large
RESTRICTED If you see a problem or opportunity
and want to address it, require that your gift be
used in a particular way. For example, if you are
interested in preserving endangered species, create
an endowment for the purchase, maintenance and breeding
of endangered species. If the Zoo accepts the gift
under restricted terms, you can be sure that your
wishes will be followed.
Methods of Giving
Bequests are outright gifts to the Zoo made in your
Will. These may save your estate federal estate taxes.
Bequests can be specific (dollar amounts or portions
of an estate); residual (the Zoo receives a percentage
of the estate following provision of other legacies);
contingent: (the Zoo receives a share of the estate
only after the deaths of other beneficiaries); and
trust remainder bequests: (the Zoo becomes a beneficiary
after the deaths of other surviving beneficiaries).
Through life insurance, donors can make very large
gifts to charity at only a small fraction of the actual
value. A person in his or her fifties for example,
can purchase a One Million Dollar life insurance policy
naming the Zoo as a beneficiary at the relatively
small cost per year for the premiums. The premiums
would be treated as charitable contributions for tax
purposes, further reducing net cost.
Gift annuities are partly the purchase of an annuity
and party a charitable gift. You transfer assets to
a qualified nonprofit organization. In turn, that
organization makes regular, fixed payments to you
(or to you and another beneficiary) for the rest of
your life (or for the life and that of the other beneficiary).
You may begin receiving your annual payout immediately
or you may choose to defer your income.
You create a trust by transferring assets to a trustee,
who invests the funds and manages the trust for you.
In the case of a charitable remainder trust, you contribute
assets to a qualified nonprofit organization; the
trust then pays you an income at least annually for
your lifetime or for a specific term up to twenty
years. If the payout is a fixed amount based on a
percentage of the initial value of the trust the mechanism
is called a Charitable Remainder Annuity Trust. If
the payout is based on a percentage of the trust assets
as valued annually, the mechanism is called a Charitable
Remainder Unitrust. At the termination of the trust,
the principal passes to the nonprofit organization.
Lead trusts function in a reverse fashion from remainder
trusts. You donate assets to a qualified nonprofit
organization. The charity receives income from the
trust for a term of years. At the termination of the
trust, the principal passes to you or a beneficiary
of your choosing. Depending upon the type of Lead
Trust used, you may be entitled to an income tax deduction
for the value of the gift. If you do not qualify for
an income tax deduction when the trust is established,
the interest income from the trust is not taxed in
your income stream. The ultimate beneficiaries pay
less in death taxes when they receive their share.
Whether or not you adopt a trust, your
Will remains the cornerstone of your estate plan.
A carefully drawn Will allows you to divide your property
among family members, friends and charities according
to your own personally desires instead of a rigid
plan set by the legislature.
Without a Will, your estate may be settled
by someone you would not have chosen. If you leave
minor children, the court may choose a guardian you
might not have approved. Your assets may be shrunk
by estate taxes you could have avoided by proper planning
and your heirs will be exposed to a maze of legal
The Art of Giving
Aristotle once said, "To give away money is an
easy matter and in any man's power. But to decide
to whom to give it, and how large and when, and for
what purpose and how, is neither in every man's power
nor an easy matter."
The planned giving of charitable contributions
is indeed an art. It can be dynamic, adaptive process
which meets the donor's changing needs and wishes.
The Gladys Porter Zoo is the perfect example of what
one planned contribution can accomplish. Located in
Brownsville, Texas and opened to the public in 1971,
the Zoo remains a monument to the determination, spirit
and careful planning of one family, a dream that became
Gladys Porter and her family felt a deep
concern for the vanishing wildlife of the world. Their
desire to do something that would not only help endangered
species, but would also alert people to the need for
continued work in wildlife conservation, inspired
the Sams Foundation to build the Zoo and then give
it to the City of Brownsville. The Gladys Porter Zoo
is dedicated to education of all, conservation of
wildlife, scientific studies in zoology and medicine,
recreation for families and appreciation of nature.
Current sources of funding for this or
any other zoo are inadequate to cover all of the tremendous
expenses of operating and maintaining as well as enhancing
a world class zoo. Your help is critical.
Each of the gift vehicles described above can provide
1. You can receive an immediate income tax charitable
deduction for the gift value of the transferred assets.
a) Cash. If you transfer cash, you may deduct the
gift value up to fifty percent of your adjusted gross
income (AGI) in the calendar year given.
b) Property. If you transfer appreciated property
(land, stocks, jewelry, etc.), you may deduct the
gift value up to thirty percent of your AGI in the
taxable year given. EXAMPLE: You donate securities
to establish a Charitable Remainder Trust. Your charitable
deduction is $50,000 and your AGI is $70,000 so you
may deduct $21,000 ($70,000 x 30%) this year. You
may carry over the remaining $29,000 deduction for
up to five years or until the deduction is fully utilized,
whichever comes first.
2. You may receive a regular income from
3. Depending on the asset used to fund
the gift, you may substantially reduce or even eliminate
estate taxes and avoid income taxes on any gain in
4. Charitable contributions have always
represented a substantial portion of the Zoo's necessary
funds. Without them, the Zoo would not be able to
offer its current educational programs, meet its operating
expenses or continue to be a world leader in zoological
research and conservation.
For more information contact email@example.com
or call the Office of the Director at (956) 546-7187.