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Old 04-29-18, 09:29 PM
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Originally Posted by Gurge View Post
Awesome. Thanks guys. I think with doing some of my own research the charity thing will be the best way to go but I'm trying to make bikes available to everybody. If money gets involved it would really only be to cover my out of pocket cost and space overhead if there is any. Not trying to profit. Except for to make friends and see people riding. One of the lbs's I talked to today seemed like they'd almost welcome a way to get off some parts without trashing them.'s a lot of work to file the paperwork and follow through to approval as a 501c3 (at least it is in California).
But if you really want your organization to thrive, it's probably your best route.

You need a relatively dedicated group of volunteers to start with, because it's a lot more work setting up a workable bike co-op than you might imagine.

Official recognition as a non-profit both simplifies what you need to do when you go to file returns (and you will need to file annual returns), and it allows you to give people receipts for donations that are deductible if they itemize. That's probably going to be less important under the new tax guidelines, but it was an important incentive for us here in soliciting donations of bicycles.

Mostly, you need to collect a variety of skillsets in your personnel organization...not just bikies, but also people with some basic accounting and small business advertising skills, as well as someone to set up and run your website. Anyway, good luck. I no longer work at the one here. Most people eventually burn out in a co-op environment after a certain number of years. Stay calm, and don't look backward.
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