Actually, the Government does appreciate your efforts to perform volunteer community service. With respect to your Reserve Police volunteer service, the IRS does allow expenses that you incurred but were not reimbursed to you to be deductible on your personal tax return.
Under the current tax code, the IRS treats these costs as charitable contributions that you may deduct on the 2008 income tax return provided you elect to itemize on your tax return.
In fact, you are specfically entitled to deduct all of the following costs as cash contributions on your tax return as follows:
- travel costs from home to the volunteer office,
-special tools or equipment purchased specifically for the volunteer work,
-out-of-pocket costs and,
-unreimbursed parking and toll costs.
All of the above costs incurred are considered as a cash contribution included as an itemized deduction on your schedule A. The only caveat is that you should keep proper receipts and records that can substantiate these expenses.