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Do Enumclaw Residents Give Enough to Charity?

Enumclaw residents making between $50k and $100k a year are proportionally more generous with their donations than people with annual incomes over $100k, according to a new study of tax returns.

How much is your area giving to charities? A new national study details the generosity in America's communities.

Compared to other parts of the south King County and the Enumclaw Plateau, Enumclaw residents are generous when it comes to charitable giving, according to a study released Monday by "The Chronicle of Philanthropy."

The median charitable contribution in 2008 from Enumclaw was $2,218, or 3.9 percent of a median discretionary income of $57,062. 

But for Enumclaw residents making between $50k and $99,999 the average contribution was proportionally higher at $1,649, or 4.7 percent of an an average discretionary income of $35,419.

The difference in giving is reflected nationally in what the "The Chronicle of Philanthropy" has dubbed the Generosity Divide

Enumclaw Income Levels Percent of Income Given Average Contribution Average Discretionary Income Total Returns $50k-$99,999 4.7 percent  $1,649 $35,419 1,883 $100k-$199,999 3.5 percent  $2,866 $82,717 1,331 $200k and up 3.4 percent $9,285 $276,506 241

The study was based on Internal Revenue Service records of Americans who itemized deductions. It gives ZIP-code level detail about the percentage of discretionary income that people gave to charity.

Percent of income given Median Contribution Median Discretionary Income Total returns Auburn
4.3 percent  $2,474 $57,228 6,644
Black Diamond
3.0 percent  $2,016 $67,599 1,026 Bonney Lake
2.7 percent  $1,600 $58,433 8,212 Buckley 3.4 percent $1,838 $54,841 2,487 Carbonado 2.8 percent $1,173 $41,297 95 Enumclaw 3.9 percent $2,218 $57,062 3,455 North Bend
3.2 percent $2,093 $65,730 2,871 Ravensdale 2.7 percent $1,632 $60,760 718

The study found:

  • States that voted Republican in the last presidential election are far more likely to be generous to charities than those that voted Democratic. The top eight states in giving preferred John McCain over Barack Obama.
  • Utah was the No. 1 state in giving at 10.6 percent, with Salt Lake City as the most giving city. By contrast, residents in Massachusetts and three other New England states give less than 3 percent. New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Vermont, New Jersey and Rhode Island are the least-generous states.
  • Lower-income people give a far bigger share of their income to charities than the wealthy.
  • Rich people who live in areas with mostly wealthy people give a smaller share of their incomes to charity than rich people in economically diverse areas.
  • Regions that are deeply religious give more than those that are not. Two of the top 10 states—Utah and Idaho—have high numbers of Mormons, who tithe more consistently than other churches. The other states in the top 10 are all in the so-called Bible Belt.

The Chronicle website also features an interactive map looking at how America gives.

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