THE WHITE HOUSE
Office of the Press Secretary
October 22, 1999
MEMORANDUM FOR THE HEADS OF EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES
SUBJECT: Supporting the Role of Nonprofit Organizations: Interagency Task Force on Nonprofits and Government
The United States is the most generous Nation on Earth. In 1998, an estimated $175 billion was given by American individuals, communities, foundations, corporations, and other private philanthropies to a wide variety of causes and organizations. Individuals accounted for 85 percent of all contributions in 1998 and their giving has increased by almost one-third since 1995. And over the next 20 years, approximately $12 trillion in wealth is expected to be transferred from one generation to the next -- more than $1 trillion of which will flow to nonprofit organizations through charitable giving.
In many cases it is nonprofit organizations that convert philanthropy into results -- helping people in need, providing health care and educating our Nation's youth. The nonprofit sector is an integral component of our national life, encom-passing more than one and a half million organizations with operating expenditures in excess of $600 billion. But more telling than the dollar figures is the new spirit of service and civic activism that nonprofits of every kind are now exhibiting. We are today in the midst of a nonprofit boom, a time when the activities of this sector are becoming ever more creative and entrepreneurial.
Nonprofits are uniquely able to identify problems, mobilize fresh thinking and energy, care for those in need on a human scale, and promote social change at the community level. As this sector grows in size and importance, there is an ever greater opportunity to forge partnerships that include Government, nonprofit groups, businesses, and citizens to address pressing public problems. There are already many ways that nonprofits work closely with the Federal Government. For example, Federal grant programs from the National Science Foundation and the National Institutes of Health assist non-profit research institutions that search for cures to cancer. And the Corporation for National Service works with nonprofits throughout the Nation to provide after-school and tutoring programs. Our challenge in this time of burgeoning social entrepreneurship is to encourage Government, nonprofits, and others to work together more meaningfully.
Therefore, today I direct the Assistants to the President for Domestic Policy and Economic Policy and the Chief of Staff to the First Lady to convene an Interagency Task Force on Nonprofits and Government ("Task Force"). The purpose of this Task Force will be twofold: first, to identify current forms of collaboration between the Federal Government and nonprofits; and second, to evaluate ways this collaboration can be improved.
Structure of the Task Force
The Assistant to the President for Domestic Policy, the Assistant to the President for Economic Policy, and the Assistant to the President and Chief of Staff to the First Lady will jointly Chair the Task Force. The Office of the Vice President, the Office of Management and Budget, and the Council of Economic Advisers will be regular participants.
The Task Force shall be composed of the following members:
(1) Secretary of the Treasury (2) Attorney General (3) Secretary of the Interior (4) Secretary of Agriculture (5) Secretary of Commerce (6) Secretary of Labor (7) Secretary of Health and Human Services (8) Secretary of Housing and Urban Development (9) Secretary of Transportation (10) Secretary of Education (11) Administrator of the Small Business Administration (12) Chief Executive Officer of the Corporation for National and Community Service
The Chairs of the Task Force may add such other officials and independent agencies as they deem appropriate to further the purposes of this effort or to participate in specific aspects of it. The Chairs, after consultation with Task Force members, will appoint staff members to coordinate the Task Force's efforts. The Chairs may call upon the participating agencies for logistical support to the Task Force, as necessary. Members of the Task Force may delegate their responsibilities under this memorandum to subordinates. During its work, the Task Force will consult regularly with the nonprofit sector.
Objectives of the Task Force
The Task Force will: