Clinton holds a torch for Points of Light

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Since we tagged the Points of Light Foundation as a cozy trysting place for big Republican donors and Fortune 500 CEOs (“Points of Lite,” Jan./Feb. 1992), Congress and the Clinton administration have continued to fund the private, nonprofit organization that supports approximately 450 volunteer agencies throughout the country. Points of Light spent $6.5 million of its $9.6 million total 1993 operating expenses on salaries, professional service fees, and travel and conferences, compared with just $1.1 million donated primarily to volunteer centers. In fact, the amounts expended on salaries and professional service fees each increased by $600,000 from 1992 to 1993, and travel and conferences jumped $450,000. On the other hand, total grant money rose by less than $100,000. Spokesperson Barbara Lohman attributes the increases to staff growth (some 65 people are on the payroll, not all based at the Washington, D.C., headquarters), the “costs of developing and printing training materials, and training people.” The foundation is working hard, COO and Executive Vice President Robert Goodwin claims, to dispel the notion “that we are somehow a captive of the Bush presidency or the White House.” Points of Light’s 1994 budget is $11 million, roughly half of which is federally funded. It seems to us like a good place to cut budgetary fat. Bill, are you listening?

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DEMOCRACY DOES NOT EXIST...

without free and fair elections, a vigorous free press, and engaged citizens to reclaim power from those who abuse it.

In this election year unlike any other—against a backdrop of a pandemic, an economic crisis, racial reckoning, and so much daily crazy—Mother Jones' journalism is driven by one simple question: Will America will move closer to, or further from, justice and equity in the years to come?

If you're able to, please join us in this mission with a donation today. Our reporting right now is focused on voting rights and election security, corruption, disinformation, racial and gender equity, and the climate crisis. We can’t do it without the support of readers like you, and we need to give it everything we've got between now and November. Thank you.

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