We are Alabama. We celebrate the success of our industry, businesses and of course our football. However, there are thousands of disadvantaged kids that, despite having big dreams and capabilities, will be excluded from these opportunities.
How many more children do we lose from under-education, dropping out, and even bullying? Too many high school graduates cannot complete a basic job application. Failing schools, system take-overs, and the failure to unite around a common goal have created a cycle of failure for too many children.
The inability to find trainable or skilled employees will be the biggest challenge we face in coming years. As leaders, we must find ways, such as tax credit scholarships, to provide students the opportunity to gain marketable skills.
If a parent can’t afford to move to a public-school district with high performing schools or can’t afford a private school, they are stuck knowing their child may never graduate or be able to provide for himself. A tax credit scholarship empowers parents to secure a quality education for their child.
I proudly serve on the board of The Alabama Opportunity Scholarship Fund (AOSF). We help disadvantaged children find the right school to meet their needs. AOSF has helped more than 3,000 children in nearly 40 counties around the state gain access to an education that puts them on a path to success. One of those children is Nick West who graduated from McGill-Toolen and is now on scholarship at the University of Alabama Huntsville.
Unfortunately, limited funds have forced AOSF to turn away 21,000 students whose families have applied for scholarships. You can help us serve some of these children by directing up to half of your Alabama income tax liability to AOSF and receive a dollar-for-dollar state income tax credit. Currently, $12 million in state tax credits are available for both corporations and individuals and these will expire on December 31, 2017. Here is a step by step guide on how to donate.
Please act now. Your immediate support is needed so our children can receive their scholarships next year.
- Jefferson County – $2.2.M (includes Birmingham, Fairfield, Bessemer) – 367 students
- Mobile/Baldwin Counties – $3.6M – 677 students
- Madison County – $1.2M – 213 students
- Blackbelt Counties – $1M (includes Dallas, Perry, Sumter, Barbour, Greene, Hale, Lowndes, Macon, Perry, and Wilcox) – 152 students
- Montgomery County – $2.6M – 442 students
- Tuscaloosa – $280,000 – 48 students
- Calhoun County – $84,000 – 14 students
- 26 other counties – $1.2M – 208 students
How to Donate:
Please help these children and their families break down the barriers to success and take advantage of the growth and opportunities that lay before them. The steps are easy.
- Determine your Alabama Income Tax Liability.
- Create a My Alabama Taxes Account (MAT) on the Alabama Department of Revenue website.
- Login to MAT and make your commitment to the Alabama Opportunity Scholarship Fund.
- Make payment to the Alabama Opportunity Scholarship Fund within 30 days.
Staff from the Alabama Opportunity Scholarship Fund is available to help you with any step in the process. Call Bri Jackson at 205-206-7803 or Lesley Searcy at 205-915-1570.
[author title=”Tommy Lee” image=”https://bcatoday.org/wp-content/uploads/Tommy-Lee_0001-3.jpg”]Immediate Past Chairman
Business Council of Alabama