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Senator Grassley: Ministries' Response to Nov. 6 Inquiry

Contact: Jill Gerber, press secretary, Committee on Finance, Ranking Member Senator Grassley, 202-224-6522

 

WASHINGTON, Dec. 7 /Standard Newswire/ --  On Nov. 6, Sen. Chuck Grassley, ranking member of the Committee on Finance, wrote to six media-based ministries for information regarding expenses, executive compensation, amenities given to executives, and board governance.  The inquiry is part of Grassley's long-standing interest in making sure tax-exempt organizations are accountable to donors and to the taxpayers as a whole.  Today was his requested deadline to hear from the six ministries.  He made the following comment on the level of cooperation so far.

 

"It's good that some of the ministries are cooperating.  I hope all of them will cooperate in the end.  They have to realize that ministries are no different from any other non-profit organization.  They have to abide by tax laws just like any tax-exempt group.   I'll be accommodating and give the ministries more time as long as they're cooperating and indicate that to my office.  If they don't cooperate, it would be very unusual.  I've looked at a lot of non-profit groups over the years, and they've all cooperated.  The only possible exception is when I was chairman, and then-Ranking Member Baucus asked for my help in getting a subpoena for charities connected to Jack Abramoff.  That was an extreme case." 

 

Here is an accounting of the ministries' responses as of Dec. 6, 5:30 p.m. Eastern time:

 

Kenneth and Gloria Copeland – Kenneth Copeland Ministries

Attorneys delivered a package of written material to Sen. Grassley's staff today.

 

Creflo Dollar – World Changers Church International

Sent Sen. Grassley and Chairman Baucus a letter indicating that the ministry does not intend to provide information voluntarily and raised the idea of a subpoena.

 

Benny Hinn – World Healing Center Church, Inc.

Sen. Grassley's staff are scheduled to meet with the ministry's lawyers on Friday, Dec. 7.

 

Bishop Eddie Long – New Birth Missionary Baptist Church

Ministry representatives said publicly that the ministry will cooperate. Sen. Grassley has not received any material or contact from the ministry.

 

Joyce Meyer – Joyce Meyer Ministries

Sen. Grassley's staff received a package of written material from the organization on Tuesday, Dec. 4, and is reviewing the material.

 

Randy and Paula White – Without Walls International Church

Today, received initial contact from attorneys.  No indication of further response.