The Trump Organization donates more profits to Treasury. The company reported yesterday that it turned over to Treasury $191,538 in 2018 profits from foreign governments. Last year, the Trump Organization gave Treasury $151,470 in profits from transactions with foreigners. The revenue is the subject of claims that the president, who still owns the firm, has violated the constitution’s emoluments clause.
The next budget fight. President Trump will roll out his 2020 budget next month and already the Administration seems to be spoiling for a budget battle. Acting OMB Director Russell Vought says the White House will demand Congress cut non-defense spending by 5 percent. Congress won’t do it. Get ready for another government shutdown next fall.
Grassley again sets his sights on non-profit hospitals. Senate Finance Committee Chair Chuck Grassley has long thought non-profit hospitals are taking advantage of their tax-exempt status by failing to contribute enough of their revenues to community needs. Now, he’s asking the IRS for information about hospital community benefit activities.
Pot tax revenues in California are lower than expected. The state reports legal cannabis sales generated $345.2 million in tax revenue in 2018. But California officials had estimated the industry would generate annual tax revenues of $1 billion once legal sales are in full gear. Revenue growth slowed in the last quarter of 2018 in part because of the state’s high taxes, local bans, and a growing black market for recreational marijuana.
Georgia’s Senate considers an economic analysis of tax breaks. Bills would require the state to conduct an economic analysis before the legislature votes on any special-interest tax breaks. In the past, such targeted subsidies have cost the state hundreds of millions of dollars in lost revenue.
Meanwhile, what will Minnesota give Google for a new data center? Google wants to build a data center next door to Xcel Energy. The firm currently operates the largest coal-burning plant in the upper Midwest but wants to shift to renewable energy. Google wants a new data center that will use clean power but first hopes to secure up to $15 million in property tax abatements from the city of Becker and Sherburne County over 20 years. Google says the data center will bring new jobs and economic growth to the area.
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