Con­tro­versy con­tin­ues

LGBT non­profit has been mired in con­tro­versy for nearly five years

GA Voice - - Front Page - By DYANA BAGBY

IRS re­vokes YouthPride's tax-ex­empt sta­tus

YouthPride, an or­ga­ni­za­tion that at one time served hun­dreds of LGBT youth in metro At­lanta but has been mired in con­tro­versy for the past sev­eral years, has had its IRS tax-ex­empt sta­tus re­voked.

A re­view of on­line IRS tax records shows the IRS au­to­mat­i­cally re­voked the or­ga­ni­za­tion’s tax-ex­empt sta­tus on Feb. 15; the sta­tus change was posted on the IRS web­site on May 11.

The IRS au­to­mat­i­cally re­vokes an or­ga­ni­za­tion’s tax-ex­empt sta­tus for fail­ure to file a Form 990 re­turn or no­tice for three con­sec­u­tive years. A non­profit can reap­ply for tax-ex­empt sta­tus.

Ac­cord­ing to GuideStar, a web­site that tracks non­profit or­ga­ni­za­tions’ 990s, the last 990 YouthPride filed was in 2011. GuideStar also notes that YouthPride has lost its tax-ex­empt sta­tus:

“This or­ga­ni­za­tion’s ex­empt sta­tus was au­to­mat­i­cally re­voked by the IRS for fail­ure to file a Form 990, 990-EZ, 990-N, or 990PF for 3 con­sec­u­tive years. Fur­ther in­ves­ti­ga­tion and due dili­gence are war­ranted.”

How­ever, on YouthPride’s web­site at www.youthpride.org, there are links for dona­tions, and YouthPride claims the dona­tions are all tax-de­ductible.

The Ge­or­gia Sec­re­tary of State’s of­fice had YouthPride in good stand­ing as of March 2, 2015, when it filed its of­fi­cial pa­per­work as a non­profit cor­po­ra­tion and paid the $85 fee.

The of­fi­cial doc­u­ments filed with the Sec­re­tary of State, how­ever, also list YouthPride’s of­fi­cial ad­dress as 72 Broad Street. YouthPride was evicted from that lo­ca­tion on May 22, 2014.

The doc­u­ments filed on March 2, 2015, with the Ge­or­gia Sec­re­tary of State’s of­fice list Terence McPhaul, the con­tro­ver­sial ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor, as the per­son who filled out the forms.

In 2013, McPhaul listed in­cor­rect board

May 29, 2015

mem­bers with the Sec­re­tary of State’s of­fice.

Ac­cord­ing to Ge­or­gia law, it is a mis­de­meanor to in­ten­tion­ally lie on a form with the Sec­re­tary of State’s of­fice, as stated in the fifth para­graph of the form cited be­low.

Calls to the Sec­re­tary of State’s of­fice for com­ment have gone unan­swered.

Listed as of­fi­cers with the Sec­re­tary of State are McPhaul as CEO, Bran­don Dykes as sec­re­tary and Theresa Wil­lis as CFO.

How­ever, in Au­gust 2014, Wil­lis told the Ge­or­gia Voice she was no longer a board mem­ber of YouthPride.

A voice­mail left with Wil­lis seek­ing com­ment about YouthPride has not yet been re­turned.

A voice­mail seek­ing com­ment was also left at YouthPride’s num­ber as listed on its web­site that also not been re­turned. Emails to McPhaul and YouthPride have also not been an­swered.

Dykes, a young HIV ac­tivist who is ap­par­ently work­ing in Nashville, was reached by phone Thurs­day, and when asked what he could say about YouthPride, he said, “Well, there’s not a whole lot I can tell you, so I’m not sure.” When asked where YouthPride was meet­ing, Dykes dis­con­nected the call and did not an­swer when called again. Dykes then is­sued an email state­ment: “Hi Dyana, out of cour­tesy I’m re­spond­ing. You have per­son­al­ity at­tacked the or­ga­ni­za­tion that has help me ac­com­plish so much in life on nu­mer­ous oc­ca­sions. De­spite any­thing you tell me or pub­lish I will never stop fight­ing for YouthPride. As proud alumni of YouthPride I know its all about pro­vid­ing a safe space for youth just like me. I have no fur­ther state­ment to pro­vide on any is­sues con­cern­ing with YouthPride.”

Terence McPhaul, who be­came ex­ec­u­tive direc­tor for YouthPride in 2009, de­clined to com­ment about the IRS re­vok­ing the LGBT non­profit’s tax-ex­empt sta­tus ear­lier this year. (File photo)

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