Singleton, Vainieri Huttle & Benson Bill to Promote Donations to ALS Research Released by Assembly Panel

(TRENTON) – Legislation sponsored by Assembly Democrats Troy Singleton, Valerie Vainieri Huttle and Daniel R. Benson to allow gross income taxpayers to use their returns to make voluntary contributions to the Greater Philadelphia and Greater New York Chapters of the ALS Association for services provided to New Jersey residents was advanced on Thursday.
Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), often referred to as “Lou Gehrig’s Disease,” is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord and is estimated to impact some 30,000 Americans at any given time, with an estimated 5,600 individuals newly diagnosed with the disease each year.
“The mission of The ALS Association is to lead the fight to treat and cure ALS through global research and nationwide advocacy, while also empowering people with Lou Gehrig’s Disease and their families to live fuller lives by providing them with compassionate care and support through a nationwide network of chapters,” said Singleton (D-Burlington). “Making it easier for New Jerseyans to donate to support this cause is the right and moral thing to do.”
“ALS is a terrible disease and we need to make it as easy as possible to support the effort to overcome it,” said Vainieri Huttle (D-Bergen). “A simple step like this could go a long way toward finding a cure, which is our shared goal.”
“For New Jerseyans able to do so, this option could make it easier for them to donate to this worthy cause,” said Benson (D-Mercer/Middlesex). “We all want to put an end to ALS, and anything that helps the cause is a step forward.”
The bill (A-3290) requires gross income tax returns to include a provision to allow taxpayers to make donations to the ALS Association for taxable years beginning on or after the date of enactment. As a depository for the donations, the bill establishes the ALS Association Support Fund.
The bill directs that 50 percent of deposits to the fund be appropriated to the Greater Philadelphia chapter of the ALS Association for services the organization provides to residents located in southern New Jersey and 50 percent of deposits be appropriated to the Greater New York Chapters of the ALS Association for services provided to residents in central and northern New Jersey.
The bill additionally authorizes the Division of Taxation to retain sufficient receipts from the donations to cover the costs of related administration.
The bill was released by the Assembly Health and Senior Services Committee.