Friday, August 30, 2013

I need YOU to HARASS some government folks ASAP or the Anacostia Playhouse may close.

We are in danger of losing the Anacostia Playhouse (again) because of more government sponsored tomfoolery.  Investing in Ward 8 sounds like a good thing until you see the sheer hell that people have to go through just to do that! 

So as the headline says,  I am inciting my readers, supporters, friends, enemies, and general haters of government sponsored tomfoolery to harass, persuade, demand, plead, confront, spam, etc. whomever it takes to get the IRS to get off their fanny and do their job! It should not take over a year to process a nonprofit application that is supposed to take 30 - 60 days to process! How are nonprofits supposed to apply for grants to keep the doors open? There are probably hundreds (if not thousands) of other nonprofits like the Anacostia Playhouse who are playing (and losing) the waiting game. 


You have this mother and daughter team that are just trying to open a small playhouse in a neighborhood in serious need of quality amenities and it's like fighting an uphill battle! First the parking, then the building permits, and now this!  This is why I hate this focus on Ward 8's alleged "gentrification" because I know first hand the real struggles of trying to open a business over here -- even a business that is trying to become a nonprofit. So opportunities have been lost here because of administrative issues. 

It should not be this hard anywhere, particularly in the nation's capital to live the American dream. 

DCist has the story on what is going on with the Anacostia Playhouse and why they may have to close their doors because no one at the IRS is willing to talk to them. 

Excerpt for DCist article:
Adele Robey and Julia Robey Christian have gone through traditional channels, speaking to IRS representatives who told them the delay was caused by a backlog of applications and the sequester. They applied for help through Del. Eleanor Holmes Norton's office, but that has yet to be successful. 
Julia Robey Christian said they were sent a form from Norton's office that the office would in turn send to the IRS. When they asked about the status of their completed form, they were sent a blank form again. Adele Robey said she's had a hard time getting in touch with the person she was told to contact. The last thing they heard from Norton's office was "We're working on it." 
An email sent to Del. Norton's office this morning has yet to be returned.
This process is new to Adele Robey, who with her late husband owned the H Street Playhouse, which is credited with helping to revive the Northeast D.C. Corridor. Since Robey and her husband owned the building, they did not have to face the nonprofit issues they are dealing with now. 
While "wonderful" people have sent in contributions to the Anacostia Playhouse, they have to go through the theater's fiscal agent Fractured Atlas, which takes six percent off the top. Adele Robey said agencies who supply the grants they desperately need won't work with companies like Fractured Atlas.
"There must be someone in this universe who can say to the IRS nonprofit division, 'Shape up! Put [aside] those other [applicants] who didn't do their due diligence and send in [tax form] 990s for three years. ... Stop farting around with Tea Party people and help some legitimate people."

I am going to get some names and numbers and emails of people you can contact on the Playhouse's behalf and I hope for all of our sake it is not too late. 

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