By Bonnie Erbe, Thomas Jefferson Street blog.
While my heart goes out to the people they serve, I have little sympathy for faith-based charities now hurting in the downturn. They never should have let themselves become dependent on the government largesse, because recessions are cyclical and inevitable, and relying on any funding source to continue forever, be it government or private sector, is unwise. But apparently they have and now many are having to cut back:
The nation's economic woes have led local and state government agencies across the country to reduce contracts and grants or delay payments to the groups, which have been forced to eliminate programs, lay off staff or try to borrow money in a tight lending market.
Unlike state governments, most of which have to spend what comes in year to year, nonprofits can carry over money in good times to use in bad times. That's what these faith-based groups should have been doing, so they had a nest egg to fall back on now. And indeed, joining the opinion of many taxpayers whose tax dollars went to these groups despite their protests, I believe faith-based groups should rely entirely on private donations and should not be receiving public funding at all.
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