President Donald Trump’s charitable foundation, which last year admitted violating federal rules on “self-dealing,” is in the process of dissolving, according to newly filed documents reviewed by NBC News.
The move fulfills a promise Trump made last December, when he said he would wind down the Donald J. Trump Foundation to avoid conflicts of interest. New York’s attorney general ordered the foundation to stop soliciting contributions in October 2016.
“The foundation announced its intent to dissolve and is seeking approval to distribute its remaining funds” to other charities, according to its 2016 Internal Revenue Service filing, filed this month and uploaded to the website of the nonprofit information source Guidestar.org by the foundation.
At the end of 2016, the foundation had assets of about $970,000, the document shows.
In a statement, a spokesperson for the foundation confirmed that it is being shuttered. “The Foundation continues to cooperate with the New York Attorney General’s Charities Division, and as previously announced by the President, his advisers are working with the Charities Division to wind up the affairs of the Foundation. The Foundation looks forward to distributing its remaining assets at the earliest possible time to aid numerous worthy charitable organizations.”
The attorney general’s press secretary, Amy Spitalnick, said the foundation can’t close just yet, however. “As the foundation is still under investigation by this office, it cannot legally dissolve until that investigation is complete,” said Spitalnick.
In its previous tax filing in 2015, the foundation acknowledged violating a legal prohibition against a “self-dealing” that bars nonprofit leaders from funneling their charity’s money to themselves, their businesses or their families.
In one section of the 2015 form, as The Washington Post first reported, the IRS asked whether the Trump Foundation had transferred “income or assets to a disqualified person.” A disqualified person could be Trump — the foundation’s president — or a member of his family or a Trump-owned business, The Post reported.
In 2015, the foundation checked yes. For 2016, the foundation checked no.
The records detail around $3 million in contributions that the foundation made to other nonprofits. In 2015, the foundation made contributions totaling $896,380, tax records show.
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SOURCE: NBC News, Ken Dilanian, Rich Gardella and Patrick Martin