Arizona School Tax Credits impact education
Under Arizona law, a state tax credit is available for contributions to support extracurricular activities in public schools. Student activities like band, drama, chorus, art, athletics, field trips, and after-school clubs can benefit. ANY after-school activity, outside the regular school day qualifies as a recipient of these monies.
Best of all, the AZ School Tax Credit allows YOU to CHOOSE where you want your tax money to go!
You can designate both the school and the activity; you can even split your contribution between different schools and programs. Can't decide? If you designate a school, but no program, you allow the school to send the funds to the programs that are most in need of support. The final determination on expenditures of any non-designated contributions is made by the school site council comprised of parents, teachers, and students.
Arizona School Tax Credits can be used by ALL Arizona State taxpayers, even if you do not have a child in school.
Arizona allows an individual taxpayer to contribute a maximum of $200, and a married couple filing jointly to contribute a maximum of $400 to a public school of their choice before April 15th and get credit against their tax liability in the form of a dollar-for-dollar credit. As a result, if you owe money on taxes, that amount is decreased by the TOTAL amount of the tax credit donation; and if you have a refund due to you, that refund will be increased by the amount of your donation. (Note: tax liability cannot go below $0.00)
A tax credit is different from a deductible donation because you may subtract the entire contribution from your Arizona state tax bill.
If your AZ School Tax Credit donation does not directly benefit your dependent, you may also be able to claim the donation as a deduction on your Federal income tax! (Be sure to consult your accountant or tax specialist for details.)
Can I designate that my tax credit contribution be used to benefit a particular student?
We encourage parents to tap this resource to help manage the expense of education! Arizona School Tax Credits can be used to pay “pay-to-participate” athletic fees, activity/club fees, or field trip expenses for a designated student. That student must be named when the contribution is made. Donations are non-refundable; however, if a fee is paid and, for whatever reason the student is unable to participate, the donation can be switched to another activity.
*NEW IN 2015: Changes to the law allow parents to use tax credits to pay for SAT and AP testing fees.
What do schools use the money for?
Generally, any optional, non-credit, educational or recreational activities that supplement the education program of the school are considered to be extracurricular and eligible for tax credit funding. Some of the areas included are:
NJROTC, ART, DRAMA, BAND, ATHLETICS, SCIENCE CLUB, LEGO/ROBOTICS CLUB, CLASSROOM ENRICHMENT, EDUCATIONAL FIELD TRIPS, OUTDOOR EDUCATION, CHORAL MUSIC, CHARACTER BUILDING, ART CLUB AND MANY, MANY MORE!!
(Purely recreational activities such as prom are NOT eligible.)
How do I make my contribution?
1) It's your tax money! What do you want it to support? For once, you can smile and tell the government how to spend your tax dollars! Pick a school or schools; if you wish, you may divide your contribution between schools and/or programs.
2) Decide how much to donate and when. Changes to the law now allow taxpayers to make donations through April 15 and apply the amount to the previous year's taxes (ie: $400 donated in April of 2016 can be used as a tax credit for 2015 income taxes). The maximum is $200 annually per tax payer or $400 annually if you are married, filing jointly. If you don't want to do that much you don't have to! If you want to contribute in smaller amounts throughout the year, you can donate multiple times to total the maximum allowable amount. Some people, once they have "primed the pump" the first year of participating, choose to donate when they receive their state tax refund, reinvesting their reimbursement from the previous year to cover the donation for the current year.
3) Choose how to submit your donation:
- Mail to: AJUSD Student Accounts
1575 W. Southern Avenue, Suite #1
Apache Junction, AZ 85120
- Take to: Any AJUSD School Office
AJUSD employees may contribute via payroll deduction:
AJUSD employees contributing to a site, program, or student of AJUSD may make a contribution through payroll deduction; a $200 contribution for a 26 pay employee would be only $7.70 per paycheck
4) No matter how you choose to donate, the AJUSD business office will mail you a receipt to file with your Arizona state tax return. Contributions must be received no later than April 15 to apply to the previous tax year.
Arizona School Tax Credits let YOU decide where to spend your tax dollars!
THANK YOU for choosing to support extracurricular activities at
Apache Junction Unified School District!
Questions about AJUSD contributions: Call 480-982-1110, ext. 2001
Questions about your state tax return: Visit the Arizona Department of Revenue's website at www.azdor.gov.
- Mail to: AJUSD Student Accounts
AJUSD Tax Credit DonationUSE "SHIPPING INFORMATION" TO SPECIFY THE SCHOOL/ACTIVITY THIS IS FOR.