Last year was the worst for economic growth since World War II. The economy shrank by 3.5 percent last year. Economic growth climbed more slowly in the final three months of the year—just one percent—compared to the previous quarter. That’s the worst contraction since 1946, when the economy shrank by 11.6 percent.
Biden: Just one covid package. Multiple officials from the White House spent Thursday insisting that the administration has no plan to break up its $1.9 trillion pandemic relief package into two smaller bills. Administration officials also said that President Biden is having regular conversations with members of both parties to get the bill passed, tempering Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer’s assertion that Democrats were willing to forego Republican support in order to pass a bill.
A reversal in Maine. Democratic Governor Janet Mills had earlier this week advocated for a tax conformity proposal that would require Maine small businesses to claim loans received through the federal Paycheck Protection program as income for state tax purposes, but would allow them to deduct essential expenses. After pushback from business groups and state Republicans, she now wants to reverse that plan. She’s tasked her administration with finding $100 million in federal money to forgive state taxes on those coronavirus relief funds.
Connecticut lawmakers have plan to end “poverty tax.” Two of the state’s House Democrats have a proposal to end the state’s practice of trying to recover public assistance by placing liens on the homes of former welfare recipients. The lawmakers said that public assistance has been treated “like a debt and not the temporary hand up it’s meant to be. ”Connecticut is one of 12 states that place liens on welfare recipients’ property. It’s one of two, along with New York, that places liens on the cash assistance offered through welfare.
Will a carbon tax in Portland, Oregon, break the state’s Bottle Bill? City commissioners will consider in March two new fees on carbon emissions that do not call for emissions reductions nor offer incentives to invest in more efficient equipment. But the fees would raise the Owens-Brockway glass recycling plant’ local taxes by more than $1 million year, and would generate $11 million in total from 80 companies. If the glass plant has to close because of the cost of the fees, all of the state’s annual 100 million pounds bottles would need either to be thrown in landfills or shipped out of state, using diesel fuel.
Did you make a lot of money trading GameStop? Prepare for your tax bill. Thanks to a stock buying community on Reddit, GameStop’s stock price grew more than 1,700 percent since the start of the year through Wednesday’s close, to almost $348 a share. It’s as yet unclear whether Reddit also has a community discussing the capital gains tax. GameStop stockholders who sell their shares will owe capital gains tax on any earnings. The wealthiest among them will see almost a quarter of their earnings, or perhaps over 40 percent or more of their earnings, go to the federal treasury.
For the latest tax news, subscribe to the Tax Policy Center’s Daily Deduction. Sign up here to have it delivered to your inbox weekdays at 8:00 am (Mondays only when Congress is in recess). We welcome tips on new research or other news. Email Renu Zaretsky at email@example.com.
Posts and comments are solely the opinion of the author and not that of the Tax Policy Center, Urban Institute, or Brookings Institution.
- © Urban Institute, Brookings Institution, and individual authors, 2020.