What is SECC?
Thanks to legislation that created the State Employee Charitable Campaign in 1993, employees of state agencies, junior and community colleges, and universities throughout Texas enjoy the benefit of giving to many of their favorite charities through an annual workplace giving campaign which features the convenience of payroll deduction. The SECC is the only statutorily authorized workplace campaign for state agencies and higher education employees throughout Texas. In 2014, the SECC marked its 21st year by raising more than $9.031 million for charitable organizations throughout the Lone Star state.
- It's an easy, effective and cost-efficient way to give to charity.
- Our contributions help improve the quality of life for people in communities locally, across the country and around the world.
- The campaign supports a wide variety of vital health and human services.
- All charities in the campaign must meet strict eligibility criteria.
How does it work?
Each fall, we get the opportunity to learn about the charities in the SECC, choose which ones we want to help and then fill out a pledge form to indicate how much we wish to donate to which groups. We can make a one-time gift by cash or check. Or, even better, our gift can be deducted from each paycheck beginning the first of the year.
The campaign runs from September through October. During this time period, you can expect to attend an informational meeting or be approached by a co-worker with information and a pledge form. The directory provides information on all the charities in the campaign - a great resource not only for helping you make your choices, but also for finding help if you need it yourself.
What charities are involved?
One of the great benefits of the SECC is the wide variety of charities and causes represented - there's something for everyone.
They range from small local organizations to large and well-known national and international groups.
Those charities that wish to participate must meet stringent legal requirements, and then be scrutinized by teams of state employees to ensure:
- They are recognized by the IRS as 501(c)(3) nonprofit organizations and registered with the Secretary of State.
- They are audited (or reviewed) annually by an accountant in accordance with generally-accepted auditing standards.
- They provide direct or indirect health and human services.
- They spend no more than 25 percent of funds raised on administration and fund-raising unless they qualify for a one-year exception due to special circumstances.
Why should I give?
- To help those who are less fortunate through no fault of their own.
- To support a favorite charity on a regular basis.
- It will make you feel great.
- It's tax deductable.
How much should I give?
How much to give is totally up to you - your personal generosity is no one's business but your own and remains confidential. Still, many of us like to have some idea of what is appropriate to consider as a gift.
First, you might consider participating as a leadership giver - one of the many people who like to do a little more by donating at the leadership giving levels described later.
Second, you might consider one of the standards used in campaigns like this throughout the nation - giving one hour's pay per month, usually calculated as .006 of your annual salary.
Third, give what you feel is appropriate for you and your budget - any gift, no matter how large or small, can make all the difference in the world to the charities in this campaign.
Your support of the SECC is voluntary
If you feel you are being coerced to donate money at any time during this campaign, please submit a written complaint to: The Comptroller of Public Accounts, 111 E. 17th Street, Austin, Texas 78774