California State Parks Protection Fund
The California State Parks Protection Fund is a tax deduction opportunity for the residents of California. By donating an amount above the cost of a State Parks $195 California Explorer Annual Pass, those additional dollars are tax deductible on your State Income Taxes. This Fund is designed to provide financial support to the State Park System.
As a component of the California State Park Stewardship Act of 2012 (AB 1589, Chapter 533), the California State Parks Protection Fund was established to provide California taxpayers the opportunity to purchase a California State Parks "California Explorer" Vehicle Use Annual Pass via their state income tax return and to designate a portion of their state tax refund for the purpose of making a voluntary contribution to support the preservation of state parks. This legislation allows, under the Personal Income Tax Law, that taxpayers can make a charitable contribution deduction for any amount deposited into the California State Parks Protection Fund in excess of the price of the State Park Annual Pass received, if any, for the year in which the voluntary contribution is made.
The California State Franchise Tax Board has revised the individual tax return form to include a space labeled the “State Parks Protection Fund/Parks Pass Purchase” to allow for the annual pass purchase and deductible voluntary contributions to California State Parks.
The Fund needs to reach a target amount set by the California State Tax Franchise Board each year to return the following year. Use the link at the right, to find out more on about our Annual Pass Purchase and Tax Deduction Program.
Assembly Bill 1589, for each taxable year beginning on or after January 1, 2012, required the California State Franchise Tax Board to revise the individual taxpayer return form, as specified, to allow a taxpayer to designate an otherwise refundable amount in excess of tax liability to be deposited to the State Parks Protection Fund, which the bill created. This legislation entitled a taxpayer making a contribution to receive a single State Parks Day Use Annual Pass from the Department of Parks and Recreation, if the price of the pass, as determined by the department, is less than or equal to the amount of the taxpayer’s contribution. This bill requires moneys transferred to the State Parks Protection Fund, upon appropriation by the Legislature, to be allocated to the Franchise Tax Board and Controller, as provided, and to the Department of Parks and Recreation to cover the costs of the issuance of the passes to taxpayers, and for purposes related to the protection and preservation of state parks. This legislation also allows a tax deduction under the Personal Income Tax Law for any contribution amount in excess of the price of the pass received, if any.