I am proud of the commitment made by California State Employees to build stronger communities not only through your work at the state, but also by your charitable contributions to the Our Promise initiative.
For over 50 years, Our Promise: California State Employees Giving at Work has shown our commitment and dedication to communities; its impact is truly historic, and has been the single largest effort among our 300,000 plus state employees to support charitable programs. This is our promise to California.
Lawfully established in 1957, CA Govt Code §13923, Our Promise gives State employees the right to donate to their chosen nonprofits directly through payroll deduction.
Annually, the Our Promise campaign commences on September 1 and concludes on October 31, and during these two months agencies and departments run their campaign efforts to ensure that each state employee be given an informed and educated opportunity to donate.
Outside of this two month campaign window, state employees are able to contact the Donor Hotline at (888) 863-6466 to receive assistance and make any changes to their current deduction, or begin a new deduction.
The Department of General Services (DGS) is the governing board for the Our Promise Campaign. Annually DGS approves a number of nonprofits to coordinate each workplace giving campaign in the 28 identified regions throughout the State of California. These organizations are known as Principal Combined Fund Drives (PCFDs) and are traditionally local United Ways. DGS authorizes these PCFDs to deduct the administrative and fundraising costs incurred while managing the campaign
A Closer Look at PCFDs (local United Way’s)
For 2016 there are 28 PCFDs (Local United Way’s) who will work in partnership with their regional department locations to support various aspects of Our Promise for state employees such as:
Assist with pledge forms within local offices for each department
Serve as a liaison to the state department and their employees in that region
Assisting campaign volunteers with all Our Promise materials
Coordinating campaign events and speakers for meetings
Providing volunteer training
Assist with year round donor customer service
Pay out the nonprofit designations selected by donors
The State Controller’s Office Important Role
Once a state employee completes their pledge form, they are authorizing the State Controller’s Office (SCO) to deduct their specific monthly payroll deduction amount. The SCO then provides these payments to PCFD’s to pay donor designations to the selected nonprofits.
The PCFD that you select to manage your nonprofit designations on your pledge form does not deduct your pay warrant contribution. Only the SCO has the authority to deduct your contribution from your pay warrant.
Our Promise is Easy!
Our Promise: California State Employees Giving at Work is an employee benefit for those who would like to donate to nonprofits through the convenience of payroll deduction. There are thousands of nonprofits listed here, which were vetted and approved by the Victim Compensation and Government Claims Board (not endorsed by VCGCB) or donors may choose to give to any 501(c)(3) nonprofit by utilizing the “Write-In Nonprofit” section of the Our Promise pledge form.
Payroll deduction donations start for as little as $5 per month!
Our Promise: California State Employees Giving at Work is rooted in the legislature and California Statute. It is mandated by law to be administered in accordance with the Department of General Services (DGS) and the Victim Compensation and Government Claims Board (VCGCB). DGS is the governing body for Our Promise and their statutes combined with the two below are what make up this wonderful campaign. To learn more about the role that DGS and VCGCB play in Our Promise, click here.
CHAPTER 2125, STATUTES OF 1957, established Government Code § 13923.
This section allows payroll deduction for an annual charitable fund drive. The Victim Compensation and Government Claims Board (formerly known as the Board of Control) were given responsibility to develop the necessary rules and regulations.
CHAPTER 870, STATUTES OF 1979, amended Government Code § 13923 as follows:
Required every employee to receive an approved list of charitable organizations, a payroll deduction form, and a designation form.
Established a process and standards for use by the Board in approving organizations, which apply to manage the State Employees Campaign in a given area (known as the Principal Combined Fund Drive Agency).
Required the Board to establish procedures by which any tax-exempt agency may receive designations.
CHAPTER 1270, STATUTES OF 1982, made technical, non-substantive changes to Government Code § 13923 in order to reflect reorganization of Title 1, Division 4, Article 6, regarding Salary & Wage Deductions.
Intent on honoring the man who began Our Promise (Formerly CSECC), we wandered the halls of the California State Archives in search of the ghost of Our Promise past. With hope and determination, and a little dusting off of the old record books of course, we were able to re-discover the man who started it all. A man with a long history of charity and community action and involvement. A man by the name of Augustus F. Hawkins.
Augustus, “Gus” as he was often called, is well known for his many acts of compassion and the political strides he made towards a compassionate and fair society. Before joining Congress for many years, he proudly represented the Los Angeles area in the California State Assembly for nearly 30 years. It is here where he authored Assembly Bill 990, which became State Law 13923 in 1957.
Gus was able to accomplish many amazing things in his lifetime, but most importantly he was able to give all State employees the opportunity to give back to their community.
To find out more about the wonderful man who began this philanthropic effort, visit here.
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