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Four top Jewish officials named to tax panel

JTA

September 8, 2011 | 11:39 am

Four top Jewish officials were named to a commission studying tax accountability for religious groups.

Nathan Diament, who directs the Orthodox Union’s Washington office; Rabbi David Saperstein, who directs the Reform movement’s Religious Action Center; Rabbi Julie Schonfeld, who directs the Conservative move net’s Rabbinical Assembly; and Steven Woolf, the senior tax policy counsel to the Jewish Federations of North America were among 25 members of a panel of religious representatives announced Thursday by the Commission on Accountability and Policy for Religious Organizations.

Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), who has long pushed for greater accountability for religious groups seeking tax exemptions in January asked the Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability, a group established by evangelical churches in the 1970s, to set up three panels to examine proposals to eliminate abuses his staff uncovered, particularly among media-based ministries.

Aside from the religious representative panel, there is one of legal experts and one of non-profit representatives.

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