DOCUMENT: Celebrity

Fonda Foundation Not So Charitable, Records Show

800k in tow, group hasn't donated dime since 2006

Jane Fonda

View Document

Jane Fonda Foundation

DECEMBER 12--Though Jane Fonda’s private foundation has nearly $800,000 in assets, the group has not made a charitable contribution during the last five years for which it has filed federal tax returns, an apparent violation of Internal Revenue Service rules.

According to the Jane Fonda Foundation’s most recent tax return--filed last year and covering calendar year 2011--the organization’s cash, stock, and bond portfolio was valued at $798,133. The filing lists the 75-year-old actress as the foundation’s president and chairman of the board, and reports that she devotes 10 hours a week to the charitable group.

In the most recent tax return, Fonda’s foundation reported making no contributions or grants. Prior tax returns show that the organization, which is headquartered in Atlanta, Georgia, similarly made no payouts in 2010, 2009, 2008, and 2007. In 2006, the group made a single $1000 donation to the Atlanta Obstetric and Gynecology Society.

IRS regulations require private foundations to make annual distributions totaling at least five percent of its assets. The rule is intended to prevent foundations from stockpiling and investing funds (while never making contributions, gifts, or grants). If applicable, the so-called Five Percent Rule could have forced Fonda to distribute a minimum of about $40,000 in 2011.

If a private foundation fails to make required minimum distributions, it faces stiff IRS penalties.

While Fonda’s foundation has not been making donations, the group has tried to grow its stash via the stock market. For example, the foundation’s last tax return lists 166 separate trades--involving thousands of stock shares--that netted about $2200.

The Fonda foundation’s returns show that most of its assets were provided years ago by the performer herself, though more than $320,000 came from a Connecticut firm that has booked speaking engagements for the two-time Academy Award winner. (2 pages)