County Endowment Fund FAQ

Below are answers to frequently asked questions about the County Endowment Fund Program. If you don’t see your question, please contact your local community foundation or contact us.

The dollars distributed in this program come from the state's commercial gaming tax revenues and are available on an annual basis, unless the legislation is changed.

Of the state's commercial gaming tax revenues, 0.8% are allocated to support the County Endowment Fund Program annually. Therefore, the amount varies annually. The Annual Reports detail the annual distributions.

Funds are provided to community foundations in the fall. The distribution of grants should occur by August of the following year, but the exact funding cycle for your county depends on the process your local community foundation has put in place. Contact your local community foundation to learn more.

In order to receive County Endowment Funds the entity must be a community foundation that meets National Standards for U.S. Community Foundations, or be affiliated with a community foundation that is nationally accredited. In addition, the entity must serve a geographic area that encompasses at least an entire county.  The only counties that are not eligible to receive County Endowment Funds are those counties that have a state-issued gaming license.

The 15 counties in Iowa that have a state-issued gaming license do not receive funds from the County Endowment Fund Program. Those counties are: Black Hawk, Clarke, Clayton, Clinton, Des Moines, Dubuque, Greene, Lyon, Palo Alto, Polk, Pottawattamie, Scott, Washington, Woodbury, and Worth. Each of the gaming license holders in those counties has an associated qualified supporting organization that handles charitable giving in those counties. You can learn more and find links to the qualified supporting organizations here.