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What is the Community Trust Foundation?

Established in 2006, the Community Trust Foundation, Inc. (CTF), is a 501(c)(3) charitable organization serving Allegany, Garrett and Mineral Counties.  The mission of CTF is to strengthen the region by working in partnership with donors and community groups.  We are not the cause; we are the causeway to growing better, stronger, more vital communities.  We provide administrative services and stewardship to help communities in our region maximize charitable giving and investing.

How does a community foundation differ from other non-profit organizations?

Most non-profit organizations serve a very specific mission.  Conversely, community foundations have a broad vision – to improve the quality of life in a given region.
As a philanthropic leader, the vision of CTF is to grow better, stronger and more vital communities for the region we serve.

We understand the needs of our community and make it easy for our local citizens to establish funds that will serve organizations and programs important to them.
The breadth of our mission provides many unique opportunities for donors to make a difference in the community in which they live –  for good, for ever.

How is the Community Trust Foundation funded?

We cover our administrative expenses by charging a small annual fee to each fund.  Our major source for funds comes from local citizens of varying means, who donate their assets to help improve the quality of life in their region.  Many contribute cash, securities, insurance and real property as outright gifts or they give through their personal will or by using planned giving, such as a charitable remainder trust.

What types of Charitable Funds are available?

Donor Advised Fund- we help you create a fund for your specific charitable intent and you reserve the right to recommend grants.  Although federal tax law requires the Foundation to make the ultimate decisions, we will always try to follow your wishes.

Field-of-Interest – we help you create a fund in which you specify your general area of community needs.  Then, CTF awards the grants to address your area of concern such as the arts, education, health-care, youth, animal welfare, environment and historical preservation.
Restricted Fund-you designate one or more existing charities to be supported and we will issue grants to those respective charities, subject to our board’s variance power, which ensures that the fund remains relevant over time.
Unrestricted funds –we help you establish a fund and CTF awards grants in response to community needs, forever.

Scholarship Fund –you specify the criteria for the scholarship and may participate on the scholarship selection committee.
Seedling Fund- you may start a seedling fund with $5,000 with the intention to increase the fund to a $10,000 minimum within two years of creating the fund.

Smaller donations are always appreciated and can be used to supplement any existing fund

What types of donations does CTF accept?

Cash gifts are the swiftest and easiest form of contribution.

Appreciated securities may frequently be more advantageous than making a direct cash gift.  Contributing appreciated stock or mutual fund shares allows the donor to avoid capital gains tax on the appreciation and usually allows the donor to deduct the full fair market value of the stock for income tax purposes.  For life income gifts, giving appreciated stock means the donor may give an asset with little or no yield in exchange for annual income.  Closely held stock may also be given to the Foundation.

Real estate gifts provide tax savings similar to gifts of appreciated securities.  Donors may also benefit by making a gift of a future interest in real estate while retaining a life interest in the property.  Real estate gifts must be readily marketable and free of environmental concerns.

Life insurance policy ownership may be assigned to the Foundation.  By naming it as an irrevocable beneficiary gives the donor an immediate tax deduction for the present cash value of the policy, while at the same time making a considerable contribution.  If the donor continues paying the annual premiums, these too, may be tax-deductible.

Planned gifts are welcomed.  A Charitable Remainder Trust gives a lifetime income to the donor while also providing a future gift of the trust to the Foundation.  In addition to cash, securities and real estate, personal property (i.e., artwork, vehicles, or collectibles) that could be sold to produce income, may also be used to make a gift or establish a planned gift, such as a charitable remainder or charitable lead trust.

A bequest to the Foundation through a will is not subject to estate taxes.  Adding a codicil to your will naming the Foundation, describing your gift and designating how you want the Foundation to use the gift, will create a permanent legacy for your community in your family name.   Some donors also have substantial retirement plan assets, (401 (k), IRA, or Keogh plans) in their estates.  From a tax standpoint, these assets are often the most advantageous to donate via a bequest or charitable trust as they may be heavily taxed as part of the estate and as income to beneficiaries.  The Foundation can be named as the plan beneficiary to avoid these taxes.  When making any type of planned gift, be certain to consult your financial advisor to structure your will and review your retirement plan accounts to insure the best use these assets.

A Private foundation may be transferred into the Community Trust Foundation, keeping your foundation’s name and board intact by creating a donor-advised fund.  By transferring all or part of the assets of the private foundation to the component fund of the Foundation, you avoid the considerable paperwork, administrative duties, restrictions and taxes imposed upon private foundations.  Establishing your fund as a donor-advised fund allows you to keep an advisory role in grant making from the fund.

What are the benefits of establishing a fund through the Community Trust Foundation?

  • We provide an easy, efficient, and effective process to help you establish a professionally managed fund that serves your community interests.
  • We partner with you to create a fund to achieve your charitable vision.
  • We save you the time, administrative expense and legal costs of starting a private foundation.
  • We offer tax-saving and estate planning strategies.
  • We spare you federal and state record keeping and filing.
  • We invest your fund with professional financial managers.
  • We provide on-going guidance and help to achieve your charitable goals.
  • We keep you informed about current community needs.

How do I set up a fund?

  • Starting your own charitable fund is easy.  First, you determine the type of fund that best suits your charitable vision.  Then, we provide the administrative support and financial management services for your philanthropic fund.
  • With gifts of $10,000 or more, we can help you create a new fund. You define your charitable intention, name your fund and establish the criteria for awarding grants.
  • With gifts of less than $10,000, you may contribute to an existing fund or join with others to create a new fund to support a community need.

What is the difference between an Endowed and a Non-Endowed fund?

You may choose whether your fund will be Endowed or Non-Endowed.

In an Endowed fund, your contributions are invested with the intent to protect your original donation over time and to use only a portion of your investment earnings to support your charitable purpose.

In a Non-Endowed fund, your contributions are invested and both a portion of your contribution and the investment earnings support your charitable purpose.

How much does it cost to start up a fund?

There is no cost for starting a fund.  Our annual fee structure depends upon the type of fund.  There is a $250 minimum charge annually and the administrative fee depends upon the type and size of the fund, ranging between .50% – 1.50%.  For more information, please contact our office.

Who manages the CTF funds?

The Community Trust Foundation funds are managed by professional investment managers who adhere to an investment policy established and approved by the Board of Trustees.  The CTF Audit & Investment Committee requires that all investment managers submit a written report of investment performance every calendar quarter.  Together, with input from the Board, the portfolio holdings are reviewed semiannually.