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For Charitable Giving, How Does the FLOW Area Stack Up?

A report conducted by the Chronicle of Philanthropy compares charitable giving on a zip code-by-zip code basis with a cool interactive map.

Households in Wyckoff and Franklin Lakes rank within the top 1,000 zip codes in the country for charitable giving, according to a report conducted by the Chronicle of Philanthropy.

The report is based on Internal Revenue Service records of Americans who in 2008 itemized their deductions; the study provides ZIP-code level detail about the percentage of discretionary income that people in states, cities, and towns are giving to charity.

The Chronicle of Philanthropy published an interactive map that can be used to find the charitable contributions of towns across the entire country.

We took a look at some of the basic figures for FLOW-area contributions and pulled them out in easy to digest form:

  • Oakland contributed a total of $8.6 million, with a median contribution of $2,254. That totals 3.2 percent of income given. 
  • Compare that with a total charitable contribution of $25.5 million from Wyckoff and $28.3 million from Franklin Lakes — that comes out to 3.5 and 3.4 percent of income given, respectively. 

But, across the board all three municipalities gave less when compared to percentage of income given on the national, state and county levels: 

  • Oakland residents, when compared to charitable giving in the United States, gave 1.5 percent less of their income to charity; compared with New Jersey residents they gave .5 percent less; and compared with Bergen County residents they gave 1.4 percent less. 
  • Wyckoff residents, when compared to charitable giving in the United States, gave 1.2 percent less of their income to charity; compared with New Jersey residents they gave .2 percent less; and compared with Bergen County residents they gave 1.1 percent less.
  • Franklin Lakes residents, when compared to charitable giving in the United States, gave 1.3 percent less of their income to charity; compared with New Jersey residents they gave .3 percent less; and compared with Bergen County residents they gave 1.2 percent less.

A religious effect to charitable giving also was found in the itemized tax returns.

Many cities and states in the Northeast, the least-religious region of the country, make up the bottom of 3 percent or less of their discretionary income to charity, according to the report.

But according to the chart released with the report, when religion is factored out of the giving picture, the northeast rises to the top.

Note: Not all who give to charity take a tax deduction or file for a return. The study only takes into account itemized deductions from 2008.

Have a question or news tip? Contact editor Joseph M. Gerace at Joseph.Gerace@patch.com, or find us on Facebook and Twitter. For news straight to your inbox every morning, sign up for our daily newsletter.

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