As the filing deadline for 2016 federal income tax returns approaches, the New Jersey Department of Health is reminding residents of a series of tax check-off boxes that support public health research and support services.
The 2016 filing deadline is April 18, 2017. Tax check-off boxes allow taxpayers to make deductible contributions on their 2016 NJ-1040 state income tax form.
Support cancer research
Taxpayers can make deductible contributions to breast, lung, prostate and childhood cancer research funds on their state income tax forms. All four cancer funds are administered by the New Jersey Commission on Cancer Research, which funds competitive cancer research grants for scientists in academic and medical institutions across New Jersey. This groundbreaking work focuses on prevention and lifesaving treatments.
An estimated 51,680 New Jersey residents will get cancer in 2017, and about 15,880 will die from the disease, according to the American Cancer Society. Since 1983, the commission on has awarded more than $40 million for 800 cancer research grants and student fellowships.
In recent years, statistics have shown that the death toll from some of the most common cancers has dropped to its lowest levels, survival rates continue to climb and more than 75 percent of children with cancer survive. These outcomes have been possible thanks to the efforts of thousands of cancer researchers and doctors who have dedicated their lives to beating this disease. In addition to the tax check off, residents can also donate using an online donation system or by purchasing a “Conquer Cancer” license plate.
For more information about the New Jersey State Commission on Cancer Research, visit http://nj.gov/health/ces/cancer-researchers/njccr.shtml.
Support AIDS services
About 37,500 people are living with HIV or AIDS in New Jersey. It is estimated that about one in eight people living with HIV do not know they are infected. Donations to the AIDS Services Fund are applied toward grants to agencies that assist and support individuals living with HIV/AIDS.
For more information about AIDS support services, visit www.nj.gov/health/hivstdtb.
Support Animal Population Control
There is also an option to donate to the Cat and Dog Spay/Neuter fund, which supports sterilization in the Department’s Animal Population Control program. The program contracts with participating veterinarians in New Jersey to provide surgeries at a discounted cost — $20 for pets adopted from participating pounds, shelters and rescue groups and $10 for pets owned by people on public assistance programs.
Each year, about 24,000 dogs and cats are euthanized in New Jersey shelters and pounds because not enough homes are available for all of them. Spaying and neutering reduces the number of animals born, helping to decrease the number that end up in shelters and pounds. Since its inception, the program has aided in the spaying and neutering of more than 212,000 cats and dogs.
For more information about the low-cost spaying/neutering program, visit www.nj.gov/health/cd/izdp/spayneut.shtml.
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