Bellingham Public Library Funds

Bellingham Public Library has several funds at the Whatcom Community Foundation to provide long-term financial support to the library.

The Bellingham Public Library Fund (non-endowed) includes three sub-funds:

  • Unrestricted
  • Capital
  • Materials

The Capital Fund was kick-started by a $50,000 donation by the Friends of the Bellingham Public Library, presented during National Library Week 2012.

Additionally, Whatcom Community Foundation manages the Bellingham Public Library Endowment Fund (BPLEF).  This fund was established in 1997 through a bequest from a library patron. The proceeds from that bequest totaled more than $120,000.

Endowment funds are held by the Foundation in perpetuity to provide interest and dividend earnings for the benefit of a charitable use, in this case the Bellingham Public Library. In every year when market performance allows for a distribution of funds, the Library receives a check from the Foundation.

Individuals can build each fund through current gifts of:

  • Cash
  • Appreciated property, such as securities (gifts of appreciated property enable donors to receive a tax deduction and avoid capital gains tax)
  • For donors 70 ½ and older, mandatory distributions from their Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) of up to $100,000 are tax deductible for 2008 and 2009 when made directly from the account. Please contact the Whatcom Community Foundation for more information.
  • Paid-in-full, but unneeded, life insurance policies
  • Income paid to a donor from a charitable lead trust or gift annuity
  • Real property

Individuals can also contribute future gifts via:

  • A bequest to a Bellingham Public Library Fund included in a will (the most prevalent type of planned gift and is how the Endowment Fund was started!)
  • IRAs and other retirement funds by naming a Bellingham Public Library Fund as the beneficiary
  • Life insurance, with a Bellingham Public Library Fund made the beneficiary
  • Planned gifts, which make a Bellingham Public Library Fund the beneficiary of a trust, annuity, or life estate.

Checks can be sent to:

Bellingham Public Library Fund*
1500 Cornwall Avenue, Suite 202
Bellingham, WA 98225

*Please specify: Unrestricted, Capital, Materials, or Endowment Fund

For more information on how to contribute, please contact the Library Director at 360-778-7221, or contact the Whatcom Community Foundation at 360-671-6463, via email at wcf@whatcomcf.org  or visit www.whatcomcf.org.