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Philanthropy Study Finds Plymouth Residents Less Generous Than Average American

The Chronicle of Philanthropy has released detailed information on philanthropy by state, county, town and zip code. Those making the least money in Plymouth give, percentage-wise, the most.

The percentage of their income Plymouth residents give to charity is less than the county, state and country averages, according to a study released Monday.

However, those making the least amount of money in Marlborough give the most, percentage-wise.

The Chronicle of Philanthropy's "How America Gives" study reported that Plymouth residents, with a median discretionary income of $55,968, had a median contribution of 2.2 percent, or $1,200, of their income to charity in 2008, the tax year for which data was collected.

By way of comparison, the county, state, and country's median contribution was 3.2 percent, 2.8 percent and 4.7 percent, respectively. (See chart below.)

Geographic Area  Median Discretionary Income  Percentage Donated  Median Contribution Total Contributions Plymouth $55,968 2.2 $1,200 $15.1 million Plymouth County $46,289 3.2 $1,477 $186.3 million Massachusetts $58,099 2.8 $1,652 $3.1 billion United States $54,783 4.7 $2,564 $135.8 billion

The study is based on exact dollar amounts released by the Internal Revenue Service that show the value of charitable deductions claimed by American taxpayers in 2008. 

The Chronicle’s rankings show the percentage of their income that households donated from the money they had left after paying their taxes and covering housing, food, and other essential expenses.

Detailed data is searchable by zip code.

While The Chronicle used averages to compare towns, readers may also search by income bracket. The study shows that those making the least money in Plymouth donated the largest percentage of their income. The tax returns reporting median discretionary income of $10,000 to $70,999 in Plymouth gave an average of 2.8 percent of their income, or $955. That is the average of 5,423 tax returns and an average income of $33,667. 

Those making $70,000-$199,999 reportedly gave 2 percent and those more than $200,000 also gave 2 percent.

malcolm nichols August 21, 2012 at 11:56 AM
What is important is taking care of your family and extended family. Amounts given to charity is meaningless and irrelevant.
Tom McCoy August 21, 2012 at 02:33 PM
It's a Republican thing. You wouldn't understand. Overseas bank accounts in the Bahamas aren't listed as a charity? They didn't count the Mormon church. You can see it in my tax returns. Citizen 99%
Tom McCoy August 21, 2012 at 02:35 PM
I wonder what ever happened to the $1,000 dollar barn coat? Will it be on the campaign trail this yea?r
Michael R. Landers August 21, 2012 at 02:55 PM
We do what we can and no amount is unappreciated by a non-profit.

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