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In a year when total revenues dropped and expenses ticked upward, Colonial Williamsburg had one thing to hang its hat on at the end of 2016: admission revenue to the 18th century living history museum rose for the second consecutive year.
The accomplishment was one Colonial Williamsburg had not seen this century.
The Virginia Gazette obtained a copy of documents Colonial Williamsburg files each year with the IRS. Known as 990 forms, they are public documents all nonprofits must file with the federal government. They cover the organization’s 2016 fiscal year and provide more context on how its nonprofit side earns and spends money.
While major indicators of Colonial Williamsburg’s economic health such as the amount it spent from the endowment to offset expenses and its increasing liabilities show the nonprofit still needs to stabilize its finances, tax documents also show the organization paid more for management in 2016 and even provided CEO Mitchell Reiss a $100,000 bonus.
The 2016 IRS form does not reflect any organizational changes Reiss announced in June 2017, which included layoffs and outsourcing jobs through a restructuring plan that would aim to level expenses and raise revenue.
While the Gazette published a multi part series of articles in October that delved into Colonial Williamsburg’s finances in recent years, the IRS form provides a new look at the organization’s spending and earnings.