Monetary & Property Gifts: Acceptance, Reporting, & Disbursement






REVISED: 9/90, 12/93, 3/00
David E. Sundstrom, Auditor-Controller
Agency and department heads have the authority to accept on behalf of the Board of Supervisors (Board) gifts, bequests and devises of money or property with a value not to exceed $10,000 per gift. Appropriations are required if a department/agency wishes to make an expenditure due to the receipt of monetary gifts by the County. Gifts in excess of $10,000 are to be reported directly to the Board for acceptance. For gifts, bequests and devises of $5,000 or more, but not exceeding $10,000, departments/agencies shall also notify each Board office via off-agenda letters of such gifts and donations immediately upon receipt. For gifts, bequests, and devises under $5,000, departments/agencies shall use their own discretion in deciding whether to advise the Board. The value of all donated property will be determined by the donor.
1.1 Purpose
To establish a procedure for the acceptance, reporting, depositing, and disbursement of monetary donations and a procedure for acceptance and reporting of property donations received by the County.
1.2 Authority
Government Code Section 25355
Acceptance of gifts by the Board
Government Code Section 25356
Treatment of specified and unspecified donations.
Government Code Section 29130
Making funds available for appropriation.
Internal Revenue Code Sec. 170(f)(8)(B)(i)
Requirements of the receipt given to the donor by the donee.
Internal Revenue Code Sec. 6050L
Disposal of donations within 2 years.
Internal Revenue Form 8283 Instructions
Donee acknowledgment
Board of Supervisors' Resolution
No. 93-1235
Delegation of authorization to accept gifts.
1.3 Definitions
1.3.1 Monetary Donations 
Monetary donations include currency, checks, money orders, etc.
1.3.2 Property Donations 
Property donations include fixed assets and controlled equipment as defined in County Accounting Procedures (CAP) No. FA.2., Fixed Asset Expenditure Coding, and No. FA.4., Fixed Assets--Equipment, and any other property of significant value.
1.3.3 Fair Market Value 
Fair market value is the price at which property would change hands between a willing buyer and seller, neither having to buy or sell and both having reasonable knowledge of all the necessary facts.
2.1 Receipts
The recipient agency shall acknowledge the acceptance of a gift by giving the donor a receipt or a letter of acceptance.
2.1.1 Monetary Donation Receipt 
Enter the amount of currency, check number, name of donor, and date of transaction on the uniform cash receipt form F850-58.2. Refer to CAP No. C.5., Handwritten Cash Receipts.
2.1.2 Property Donation Letter of Acceptance 
Describe each gift of property on agency letterhead. Include the donor's name and the date the property was received.
2.2 Deposits
Monetary gifts for specified purposes shall be deposited to the appropriate fund/agency (budgeted fund/agency or trust fund) under Revenue Source Code 7670, "Miscellaneous Revenue" for budgeted funds/agencies, and Balance Sheet Account Code 9200, "Balance-Trust Funds" for unbudgeted trust and other special funds. Monetary gifts received for unspecified purposes should be deposited into the County General fund. Such gifts should be deposited in accordance with CAP No. C.4., Deposits.
2.3 Board Reports and Approval 
2.3.1 Donations Over $10,000 
A listing of monetary and property donations accepted by departments/ agencies which are each in excess of $10,000 must be submitted directly to the Board for approval on an Agenda Item Transmittal (AIT).
2.3.2 Donations of $5,000 to $10,000 
For monetary donations of $5,000 or more but not exceeding $10,000, and for property donations valued at $5,000 or more but not exceeding $10,000, departments/agencies shall notify each Board office via an off-agenda letter of each such donation immediately upon receipt.
2.3.3 Donations Under $5,000 
For monetary donations under $5,000 and property donations valued at under $5,000, departments/agencies shall use their own discretion in deciding whether to advise the Board of such donations.
2.4 Transfers from Trust Funds 
Departments/agencies which deposit monetary donations into a trust fund because the donations are restricted to a specified purpose must transfer those donations periodically from the trust fund to Revenue Source Code 7670, "Miscellaneous Revenue," in the General Fund, or in other funds outside the General Fund as appropriate, in order to expend the monies for the specified purposes. The expenditures cannot be made directly out of the trust fund.
2.5 Appropriations of Unanticipated Revenue 
If the department/agency does not have sufficient appropriations to cover the expenditures related to the donations, an AIT must be submitted to the Board identifying Revenue Source Code 7670, "Miscellaneous Revenue," to be increased and requesting that monies be appropriated in an equal amount according to Section 29130 of the Government Code. Pursuant to Section 29130, gifts received must be either in excess of anticipated amounts or not specifically set forth in the department/agency budget.
2.6 Property Donations 
2.6.1 Reporting
Property donations with a minimum fair market value equal to or greater than the fixed asset amount per CAP No. FA.2., Fixed Asset Expenditure Coding, and department/agency-controlled equipment, must be reported to the Department/Agency Property Officer. Property donations that qualify as fixed assets must also be reported to the General Ledger Unit of the Auditor-Controller Department for inclusion into the agency's central fixed assets inventory records. Send a memo to the General Ledger Unit listing a description of the donated asset, the dollar value, and the date received. Attach copies of any relevant documentation such as a copy of the letter of acceptance given to the donor.
2.6.2 Value
The value of donated property is the responsibility of the donor. If the donor does not place a value on the property, or it is felt that the value has been overstated or understated by the donor, then the department/agency should make a reasonable estimate of its fair market value.

For all donations over $500, the donor is required to file Form 8283 with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) along with written appraisals supporting the value of the donation. This form also requires the donee to acknowledge the donation and to receive a copy of the written appraisals (see Section 2.8).

If the value of donated property, such as land or structures and improvements, remains unknown, the department/agency may wish to hire an independent appraiser. The department/agency should have documentation showing that the value assigned to the asset is reasonable.
2.7 Records of Donations 
Departments/Agencies shall maintain internal records of all gifts, bequests, and devises of money and property. No formal reports of donations are required except as noted in Section 2.3.
2.8 Completion of IRS Donee Acknowledgment 
The department/agency receiving the donation is required to fill out Part IV of IRS Form 8283 upon receipt from the donor. This form is only required for donated property valued in excess of $500, and the department/agency should receive a copy of Section B of the form, which includes the appraisal summary for the property donated.
2.9 Disposal of Donated Items Within 2 Years 
The department/agency is required to file IRS Form 8282 if donated property valued at more than $500 is disposed of within 2 years of initial donation, except for property which was consumed or distributed for charitable purposes. This form must be filed within 125 days after disposal and a copy must be sent to the donor of the property.
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