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FYI: A six-month investigation of more than 10,000 nonprofits nationally found that hundreds have given personal loans to executives and board officers, often in violation of state laws. Looking at IRS 990 forms for the years 1998 through 2001, the Chronicle of Philanthropy found at least 1,002 groups had outstanding debt to officers and executives, often in the form of interest-free loans to help new executives with mortgages or loans to big donors who were borrowing back start-up money. The loans added up to $142 million worth of debt. Some groups told the Chronicle that the loans were a necessary part of recruitment for big nonprofits like universities. But other observers called for new federal rules banning such transactions, including Sen. Charles Grassley (R-Iowa), whose finance committee could lead legislation creating that ban. [2/9/03]

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