Many nonprofit organizations rely on volunteers to serve vital operational needs. From overseeing major fundraising events to filling daily administrative or other critical operational needs, volunteers often serve as the hands-and-feet of an organization. They significantly expand the organization’s capacity and mission-impact, beyond their paid-staff. Yet, given their vital role, the expectations, guidelines, and management of volunteers are often overlooked.
Will the clergy housing allowance stand? Members of the clergy continue to receive mixed signals. Two federal district courts in Kentucky and Wisconsin have considered the question – with very different outcomes. The Wisconsin case is now on appeal before the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals. The venerable housing allowance stands in the balance. Hundreds of thousands of clergypersons could be impacted by outcome of the appeal. We therefore provide this update and some insight on how the divergent outcomes might impact the Seventh Circuit’s decision.
“It is declared that 26 U.S.C. § 107(2) violates the establishment clause of the First Amendment to the United States Constitution.”
-- Judge B. Crabb, Federal District Court of Western Wisconsin regarding the clergy housing allowance (November 20, 2013).