Revised February 2009
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21. Rhode Island—Tax Credits for Contributions to Scholarship Organizations
Program type: Tax credits for business entities for contributions to scholarship organizations
Description: The Rhode Island Business Entity Scholarship Tax Credit Program provides tax credits to business entities that contribute to Scholarship Granting Organizations (SGOs). Business entities receive a credit valued at 75 percent of the contributions made or 90 percent if the second-year donation is worth at least 80 percent of the first year's donation, with a maximum credit of $100,000. The state has capped the amount of credits available at $1 million. In order for students to be eligible for these corporate scholarships they must be from families whose income does not exceed 250 percent of the federal poverty level.
Amount of assistance: SGOs establish scholarship amounts individually. For the 2007-08 school year, the average amount of assistance was $3,757.
Number of participants: In the 2007-08 school year, 282 students in grades K-12 received scholarships from three SGOs to attend 30 private schools.
Authorizing statute: State of Rhode Island General Law Chapter 44-62
Legislative history: The Rhode Island Business Entity Scholarship Tax Credit Program was signed into law on June 30, 2006. The program began on Jan. 1, 2007.
Judicial history: No legal suits have been filed regarding the program.