Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth - 990 Tax Returns, Employee Compensation

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Someone asked if Richard Gage (head of Architects and Engineers for 9/11 Truth - AE911) has a profit motive for promoting one story over another. I remembered that the AE991 990 forms had listed his compensation, so I went to look it up. The most recent filing on Guidestar is for the 2015 tax year.

20171208-162304-kjs8y.jpg

I was surprised that it was listed as 0, even though he was working for 80 hours a week. as I remembered it being higher. I looked at the previous year, 2014:
20171208-162421-a5lwt.jpg

Sure enough $70,835, wh

This amount is also listed in the 2014 990 on pages 8 and 10:
20171208-162620-wqmhe.jpg

So we'd expect that line to also be zero on the 2015 form? But it isn't:
20171208-162745-bg1j6.jpg

Of course there's nothing wrong with the president of a non-profit taking a salary. However it would seem like this should be made clear. In 2015 there was $234,774 in "Salaries and other compensation", and yet no indication of where this was going.

Presumably Gage is at least being paid $85K, but why is this no longer being reported? Has the tax code changed?


Source of of 990 Forms:

2007-2013 = https://www.citizenaudit.org/organization/261532493/architects-engineers-for-911/
2014/2015 = https://www.guidestar.org/profile/26-1532493
2016 = Direct request from AE911Truth
 

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Efftup

Senior Member.
If one were to be uncharitable, they would suggest it is not being reported BECAUSE people have asked the question about his motives being financial, but as anybody who will actually bother to look at the tax form you found would likely be as thorough as you I don't think that would really work.
 

Oystein

Senior Member
I have the latest, 2016 tax return on my computer, will upload it in a few hours when I get home. It again does not show salaries broken down individually. There is one line with sum of Board compensations: 65,000 dollars, and I would guess that's Gage's base salary. Surprised it has gone down. I cannot imagine that Kelly David, doing 40 hours per week, gets no salary, and she is a Board member.

I guess we need to look at current law and regulations to figure out how and why it's possible not to detail Board officers' salaries.

I am convinced that Ted Walter receives compensation, but he is not an officer. Employees appear only as a summary of salaries. I think there is a number of helpers who get some compensation.
 

Oystein

Senior Member
Alright, I am attaching the 2016 Form 990, and two screenshots thereof. Same mystery as 2015:

They check the box "...neither the orhanization nor any related organization compensated any current officer, director or trustee" on page 7, before listing all directors with 0 "Reportable" compensation; but in line 5 on page 10, they show $65,500 for "Compensation of current officers, directors, trustees, and key employees". This is clearly a contradiction!

Page 7:
2016 Form 990 AE911T Page 07 Board Members and compensation.jpg

Page 10:
2016 Form 990 AE911T Page 10 Expenses - Compensations Salaries.jpg


This Form 990 was perpared on 2017/11/15, and I got hold of it a few days ago.
 

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Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
20171209-121405-lnkdd.jpg

$208K is more than 10% of $761K, any yet they only have $89K of the 11g expenses in Schedule O. Where did the rest go?
20171209-121638-e7zfz.jpg
 

Oystein

Senior Member
Good question, I noticed that to. Speculation: Only item exceeding a certain amount or proportion need be detailed in Schedule O.

More likely: Sloppy book-keeping, or intentionally hiding stuff and hoping IRS clerks won't notice.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Since we have all the 990s in one spot, I've graphed the Revenue and Expenses to provide some context.
AE911T Revenue vs Expenses.png

Looks like a steady rise in revenue, with one +$300K spike in 2013, which I think was a single large donation for the ReThink911 campaign?
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
$208K is more than 10% of $761K, any yet they only have $89K of the 11g expenses in Schedule O. Where did the rest go?
Wait, the 2016 Schedule O is exactly the same in 2012:
20171209-135352-1fl82.jpg
20171209-134715-3ihwp.jpg
Which are the correct numbers for that year:
20171209-134941-3q7ft.jpg


But then they just repeat the 2012 numbers incorrectly every year after that.

20171209-134753-sbku1.jpg
(should have been $106,192, $53,096, and $17,699)


20171209-134820-m1sql.jpg
Etc.

Very sloppy. They have been incorrectly listing it for four years.
 

Oystein

Senior Member
Yes. The ReThink911 campaign that got 23,000 signatures at a price of almost $13 per signature. Their aim was a million. :D

Gage's salary, however, over the years:
Year Compensation
2007: 0
2008: 0
2009: $75,450
2010: $80,652
2011: $85,008
2012: $85,008
2013: $85,008
2014: $70,835
2015: $85,000
2016: $65,500

Compensation Gage 2007-2016.gif

For 2015 and 2016, no compensation for Gage is explicitly stated, but the expense item 5 in 2015 was $85,000 - practically the same that Gage took in three previous years, so I assume that line reflects his salary. Suprising that it went down in 2016!
 

Oystein

Senior Member
Wait, the 2016 Schedule O is exactly the same in 2012:

Which are the correct numbers for that year:


But then they just repeat the 2012 numbers incorrectly every year after that.


(should have been $106,192, $53,096, and $17,699)



Etc.

Very sloppy. They have been incorrectly listing it for four years.
Oh wow hahaha :D
I had noticed in previous years that an occasional number was copied from the previous year, but nothing this systematic.
Most notably, Part I item 1.8 "Contributions and grants" listed the exact same amount of $288,893 in 2010 and 2011, but IIRC, the sums were correct, so I considered that a coincidence.
 

NoParty

Senior Member.
2009: $75,450
2010: $80,652
2011: $85,008
2012: $85,008
2013: $85,008
2014: $70,835
2015: $85,000
2016: $65,500
So it would appear that Mr. Gage would have over 632,000 reasons to keep attacking the "official" story...
 

John85

Member
Gage's salary, however, over the years:
Year Compensation
2007: 0
2008: 0
2009: $75,450
2010: $80,652
2011: $85,008
2012: $85,008
2013: $85,008
2014: $70,835
2015: $85,000
2016: $65,500
Richard Gage could easily have earned more by staying as an architect.

https://www.sokanu.com/careers/architect/salary/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earnings_for_architects#cite_note-8
 

NoParty

Senior Member.
Richard Gage could easily have earned more by staying as an architect.

https://www.sokanu.com/careers/architect/salary/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Earnings_for_architects#cite_note-8
But people expect results when they pay architects
(well over a half a million dollar$)
 
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Jeffrey Orling

Senior Member
Gage an lots of percs... free housing and travel and lodging wherever he went.,, and who know if it included a car and communication expenses. He lived in the office of AE ... at least back in 09.
 

DannyBoy2k

New Member
But people expect results when they pay architects
Indeed this. Sure, he might get somewhat less money, but he doesn't actually have to produce anything, as it were. Getting payed as an architect would require at least a reasonable amount of "architecting".
 

Jeffrey Orling

Senior Member
Gage founded AE when it got the bug that 911 might be not what we were told. It's only clear that he intended to use his "credentials" to leverage support for the "new investigation" believes would reach a different conclusion about what happened at the WTC... which he is convinced was a CD. His job new job as he sees it is to raise consciousness about HIS views and this requires money for "getting the word out", support staff to do this and some infrastructure. AE does no research, sponsors none with perhaps the exception of the Hulsey study. They seek support from people with building/construction/engineering credentials as well as the general public which signal support by signing their petition and giving donations to get more signatures and pay operating expenses. He has no special expertise in tall buildings, marketing, political organizing and public speaking... but that has not preventing him for all of these a part of his new career as 911 activist.
 

Oystein

Senior Member
Keeping in mind that this subforum is about debunking (or supporting) claims related to 9/11 conspiracy theories, I guess the relevant claim here is that AE911Truth's Forms 990 reflect accurately their income and expenses. Including the compensations of Gage, his fellow Board members and employees. So it may be of interest to ask whether in fact Gage takes in $65,500, and David, Barnum nothing.

It is less on topic to speculate what they might earn in other positions, or to judge whether the salary is worth the output. That may be of interest to those who support AE with money or volunteer work. I assume none of us do that.
 

benthamitemetric

Senior Member
According to this article in Architect Magazine, prior to starting AE911Truth Richard Gage worked at the (seemingly now-defunct) firm of Akol & Yoshii, Inc. which was located in Walnut Creek, California, a distant suburb of San Francisco. It's certainly possible that he would have made more working at such firm than he made with AE911Truth. It's also possible he would have made less. It depends on exactly what his role was at the firm. I'd assume that he was paying himself roughly the same amount that he was last getting paid in the private sector. Of course he does also get a bunch of perks (chiefly travel and likely meal reimbursements, etc.) from AE911Truth and there does seem to be a lot of money (likely inclusive of such amounts) every year for which the AE911Truth 990 does not provide a clear accounting. Whether he's truly better or worse off financially on net is probably not known by anyone but Richard Gage.
 
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Tomi

Member
Come on. Surely you have figured it out by now???

There is a reason Gage repeatedly claims that he works, on average 80 hours a week. That's an average mind you.!

So let's assume like most architects he starts late. So let's say on average he probably starts around 9am has an hour for lunch and finishes at 10pm, when he stops for a well deserved dinner. Let's assume he does that 6 days a week which means on Sunday he gets a lie in and can start at 10am, an hour for lunch and an hour for church which means he can finish nice and early dinner at 8 pm. That's 80 hours! An average week. I can't imagine what a tough week looks like.

But why does he work so hard ??? Well it's the overtime of course..!!! That is not declared as a base salary.

Come on, you know it's the truth. !!

And what does he do in his busy week. Well I guess he has a lot of meetings.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
Please avoid posting irrelevant personal/private details and speculation. This is just about AE911's 990 form and what it says about how much they compensate people.

If there's something that's relevant, please make sure the information is current and documented.
 
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DannyBoy2k

New Member
which was my take tbh - he does not seem to be doing this for the money

more like a paid hobby
If you claim an AVERAGE of 80 hours a week...that's not a hobby in any way. Just noting.

In re the tax form, I wouldn't use that form even if I was head of a non-profit organization, which introduces an uncertainty as it were, but all the same, re-using the same numbers can't be said to be other than, at the very least sloppy reporting, and at worst, deliberately falsifying a tax form. Either way, it's rather suspicious. On top of this, if the President, Director, Treasurer and Secretary claim NO compensation has been given, where is the 85 thousand dollars paid to "current officers, directors, trustees and key employees" actually going? Particularly given Oy's find that they claim NO officers are getting compensation.
If that was the case, and Gage claims he works 80-hour weeks...where is he getting the money for actually LIVING? That would leave no time to gain sufficient amounts of money for basic living. Unless he is independently wealthy? Something that I would think would be known.
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
If that was the case, and Gage claims he works 80-hour weeks...where is he getting the money for actually LIVING? That would leave no time to gain sufficient amounts of money for basic living. Unless he is independently wealthy?
I don't think he'd deny this is how he makes his living. It's more of a tax reporting issue. This isn't HIS tax form however, that would be private.
 

Jeffrey Orling

Senior Member
My brief experience inside echo chamber back in late '09 was that there were a few people who got a "stipend"... their word... which was a small monthly check and around $500 or $1,000. I don't think more than a half dozen "team leaders" received these. Not sure of the amounts however. Gage's draw was around 75K and he lived in the "office"... I suppose rent free. I suppose he expensed a lot or had an expense account from AE for travel etc. AE had a lawyer what paid to assist in tax matters. Aside from RG's compensation and expenses.... and the stipends.... their expenses were web relate costs... and producing, printing and distributing marketing materials.. brochures, and CDs.. and of course rent for their office and the salary of Tanya RG's assistant at the time. I am sure things evolved... but that was what it was back then.
 

Oystein

Senior Member
Find attached copies of AE911Truth's Form 990 for Tax Years 2010 through 2016. All these forms have the checkbox in Part IV, line 2, that reads "Is the organization required to complete Schedule B, Schedule of Contributors? (see instructions)" (typically around page 4 of the PDF) marked "Yes". This means AE911Truth was required to submit "Schedule B", an additional form appendix to list donors who contributed more than $5,000 within the tax year.

You will see that this Schedule B, with donors listed, is included for years 2010-2013. For 2014 and 2016, I only have a first page of Scheduly B, but the list of donors is missing. For 2015, Schedule B is missing altogether.
(Prior to 2010, AE911T was only required to fill out Form 990-EZ - for "easy", which was shorter, due to their having received total contributions below some threshold)

I do not recall the sources of these documents - over the years, I would download from Guidestar, or get them directly from AE via an acquaintance, and perhaps I have some third and fourth source. On my computer, I have two or three versions for some years. I see that Schedule B seems to be missing in the files Mick apppended in the Opening Post. Guidestar and CitizenAudit seem not to include that Schedule as a general rule.

I do not know if they are required to hand out this Schedule B when asked, or if perhaps sincce 2014 it is no longer required, or perhaps not even allowed, to publish the donors' identities.
 

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Jeffrey Orling

Senior Member
There are all manner of "fringe" groups advocating for something or other. It's their right to do so... and as long as they follow the rules... who cares? It's sad to see how many of these [...] conspiracies have so many followers. AE911T is one of them. Obviously Gage has made a career out of it and and he's not going to get a real job.
 
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Pepijn van Erp

New Member
If Gage is giving a lecture as president of AE911Truth, would his speaker fee (if any) have to be reported in these 990 forms? Or would he be able to receive them as private income?
 

Mick West

Administrator
Staff member
If Gage is giving a lecture as president of AE911Truth, would his speaker fee (if any) have to be reported in these 990 forms? Or would he be able to receive them as private income?
I suspect that's more of an ethical issue than a legal one.
 
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