A vacation tax credit? Arizona Senator Martha McSally proposed a $4,000 tax credit for adults ($8,000 per couple and $500 per child) for tourists who travel at least 50 miles from home. The credit, floated earlier by some White House aides, would be good for travel through 2021. President Trump, who owns hotels and golf resorts, also has promoted an expansion of the three-martini lunch tax deduction. McSally faces a tough reelection battle.
Will tariffs on Canadian aluminum take effect again this week? Politico reports that the White House wants the Canadian government to impose quotas to slow the surge of its aluminum exports. If not, it threatens to again levy a 10 percent tariff on imported Canadian aluminum. The White House issued this ultimatum in advance of the July 1 start date of the US-Mexico-Canada free trade agreement.
Senators introduce bipartisan bill to expand an above-the-line deduction for charitable giving. Republican senators Jim Lankford, Mike Lee, and Tim Scott joined Democrats Chris Coons, Jeanne Shaheen, and Amy Klobuchar to cosponsor the bill. The Universal Giving Pandemic Response Act allows non-itemizers to deduct contributions up to about $4,000 for individuals and $8,000 for married couples for 2019 and 2020 tax years. Taxpayers who already filed their 2019 returns (nearly all have) could amend their returns. The CARES Act created a $300 charitable deduction for non-itemizers for 2020 only.
Whither Georgia’s film tax credit? The Georgia film tax credit is one of the world’s most generous subsidies for the entertainment industry. This week the state’s Senate Finance Committee approved a bill that would mandate audits of all film and TV projects that claim the credit. The move follows two earlier state reviews that found weaknesses in program oversight.
New Virginia taxes take effect on July 1. The state’s tax on cigarette and tobacco products will double, from 30 cents to 60 cents per pack of cigarettes. Liquid nicotine will face a new tax rate of 6.6 cents per milliliter (a vaping cartridge or pod contains around 0.7 milliliters of liquid nicotine). Gun safes will be exempt from retail sales and use tax if they cost less than $1,500.
In Russia: More cash to families, a tax on the rich? With his popularity plummeting in the face of the coronavirus pandemic, President Vladimir Putin has proposed new cash payments for families and the unemployed. He’d extend increased jobless benefits and a payment of 10,000 rubles per child over age 3. Putin also would replace Russia’s flat-rate income tax with two-rate system that raises taxes on the wealthy. Income over 5 million rubles would be subject to a 15 percent tax. The current tax rate of 13 percent would apply to income below that level.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org.
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.