California Resident Income Tax Return formThis morning I testified before the Senate Committee on Governance & Finance, on a revised version of SB 782 – California Sexual Violence Victim Services Fund, authored by Senator Mark DeSaulnier. If passed, the bill will place CALCASA back on the voluntary contributions, tax check-off. The funds would be directed to the California Office of Emergency Services (CalOES), for distribution to CALCASA for awarding of grants to support a menu of services offered by California rape crisis centers. I am pleased to announce that the bill successfully passed the first committee and is now headed to the Senate Appropriations Committee.
Many of you are aware that CALCASA had been named to the tax check-off in 2005, but had not previously been able sustain the $250,000 minimum contributions. It is our belief that with increased awareness on the issue of sexual violence, along with the benefits of social media, we will be able to bring more awareness to tax payers about their opportunity to designate funds for rape crisis centers.
While the fund is not expected to create a full solution to addressing the gaps or limited existing resources, it is a beginning in elevating awareness about the vital work of rape crisis centers and the survivors they serve. Tax check-off, voluntary contributions would be utilized to help rape crisis center programs in covering expenses such as: 1) Emergency back-up (hotline or in-person advocacy/accompaniment), 2) Emergency Fund Resources (transportation, hotel and food vouchers, 3) Community Education, 4) Training (self-defense workshops etc.,).
CALCASA remains committed to identifying and creating increased revenues to fund the work done by rape crisis centers. Today’s passage of SB 782, is another small step in raising the visibility of the occurrence of sexual violence.