AFER's IRS 990: $3.4M Raised
For Prop 8 Legal Challenge
The first IRS 990 filing for the American Foundation for Equal Rights is now available for public inspection, and to their credit, the group's leaders have posted their FY 2009 filing on their site.
Revenue is listed at $3.4 million, and $2.6 million was spent on "sponsorship of the federal court challenge of California's Proposition 8, known as Perry v. Schwarzenegger."
Another expense, for a "public awareness campaign to promote full civil rights for the LGBT community", was listed and that amount was $312,333."
In the section for independent contractors, AFER reports spending nearly $1.7 million for "legal and ancillary legal expenses" through Griffin, Dunn & Crutcher LLP. That's the firm were Ted Olson is a partner.
I'd say the gay community got a much better deal out of the $3.4 million spent by AFER in FY 2009 fighting for gay marriage in the courts, than we got from the $45 million wasted by the No on Prop 8 campaign and its lead organization in the election of 2008, Equality California.
Speaking of which, EQCA recently announced a series of town hall meetings across the state to discuss the possibility of mounting a 2012 repeal at the ballot box. The argument for going back to the voters next year, with EQCA again serving as a leader in that battle, is that we shouldn't put all our eggs in the basket of the courts.
This pro-2012 repeal argument calls for at least $53 million to be raised for that campaign. A frightening thought, when so many direct-service health agencies serving LGBT people and persons with AIDS are struggling to keep the doors open.
Glad to say, I don't hear any serious proposal being made to trust EQCA again with millions of precious gay dollars, when Perry v. Schwarzenegger and other legal challenges fighting for gay marriage are working their way through the courts.
Final thoughts on AFER's IRS 990. Their revenue probably jumped significantly in FY 2010, which will be reported in next year's tax filing. I also give AFER's leaders a gold star for voluntarily posting their IRS 990 on their site and that it's so easy to locate.
Here's the image of the tax filing's opening page. Click to enlarge: