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Business in Brief
January, 2010 - Issue #63
Get more Tax Money Back with Charitable Contributions
As we approach year-end, many of us may need to catch up on our charitable contributions for a number of reasons, in addition to a tax break. So, let's briefly review the IRS rules on deducting charitable contributions. A donor will not be allowed any deduction for a contribution by cash or check, or any other monetary gift, regardless of the amount unless the donor retains either (1) a bank record that supports the donation or (2) a written receipt or communication from the charity showing the name of the organization, date and amount of the contribution.

Property donations valued at less than $250 must be substantiated by a written receipt or letter from the charitable organization showing the organization's name, the date and place of the contribution, and a detailed description of the property. Donors must also obtain a written acknowledgment from the charity if the value of the contribution (in cash or other property) is $250 or more - a canceled check or other reliable records are not sufficient proof.
Resource: Michael L. Green of Michael L. Green Tax and Financial 257-4111

Hospital debutants rocked the catwalk at the 25th-annual event. Clothing from J. David
Hospital debutants rocked the catwalk at the 25th-annual event. Clothing from J. David's Custom Clothier was also a hit with the crowd of 450.
"Moulin Rouge" Fashion Show Wows Audience and Raises Funds for Henry Mayo ICU
Fashion met philanthropy during the Paris-themed Henry Mayo Newhall Memorial Hospital Guild "Sunday at the Moulin Rouge" luncheon and fashion show held at the Sheraton Universal on November 15. The event raised needed funds to benefit the new and expanded intensive care unit, scheduled for completion in 2010; 253-8051 www.henrymayo.com

A New New Year's Resolution for Retirement
Here's a new New Year's resolution to consider: Re-evaluate your retirement savings plan so you can have the retirement lifestyle you envision.

Dan Csicasi and Rick Foster of Valencia
Dan Csicasi and Rick Foster of Valencia's Salon Glo created the coiffures, ranging from a mix of traditional chignons all the way to fantasy styles exploding with colorful feathers.
Have you considered how much you will need to save for that lifestyle? A recent survey showed that only 47 percent of workers have tried to calculate how much money they will need for a comfortable retirement. It also showed that 44 percent of the people who have actually crunched the numbers made changes to their retirement plans, and of those, almost two-thirds started to save more.

It's commonly recommended that your annual retirement income should be equal to 70 percent of your current income. However, calculating your actual income needs during retirement will most likely reveal that you will need far more. Your personal financial situation, desired lifestyle, health status, and life expectancy should be taken into account for a far more accurate picture of what your needs will be.

That 70 percent figure usually assumes that all your major debts, including a mortgage, are paid off, and that your expenses in retirement will be lower than when you were working. Both assumptions may be unrealistic because, when you retire, you may want to travel, pursue hobbies or other leisure activities. In later years, healthcare costs and possible long-term care may eat away at a large portion of that income. You should also consider the effects of inflation.
Resource: Glen Esteban, LPL Financial Services, 295-8938 www.getwisecounsel.com
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