Ways & Means may consider a retirement bill next week. Politico reports the panel may markup retirement savings and IRS reform bills on April 2, but the package is not likely to include efforts to restore dozens of expired tax provisions. Retirement and IRS initiatives had bipartisan support in the House and Senate last year, though this year’s version likely will include some changes.
A House panel wants Trump’s financial records. While House Ways & Means Committee Chair Richard Neal is still preparing his request for President Trump’s tax filings, the House Oversight Committee is going a different route. It wants 10 years of Trump’s financial records. The panel wants to know if Trump inflated his net worth in his unsuccessful effort to buy the NFL’s Buffalo Bills franchise.
What is the Trump Administration’s IRS budget missing? TPC’s Janet Holtzblatt says that while the 2020 agency budget contains some promise, it fails to provide the IRS with adequate long-term resources to reduce noncompliance by the wealthy, business owners, and corporations.
Speaking of Trump’s returns, voters are divided. A new POLITICO/Morning Consult poll finds that half of those surveyed say getting the returns should be a priority for Congress, while 40 percent say it should not be. Three-quarters of Democrats want Congress to get the returns but only one-in-five Republicans do. Independents are evenly split.
One presidential candidate releases her 2018 tax returns. Will others follow suit? New York Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is the first presidential hopeful to release last year’s returns, and calls on her colleagues running for the 2020 nomination to do the same. It might give voters a chance to see how each candidate was affected by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, if they release their 2017 returns, too.
Senate Finance Committee will investigate syndicated conservation easements. Panel chair Chuck Grassley and top Democrat Ron Wyden sent letters to 14 people asking for appraisals, promotional materials, the identities of investors, and information about promoters’ fees. Grassley has been targeting tax-subsidized easements for years. Wyden said, “The goal of our bipartisan investigation is to ensure a few bad actors don’t threaten the program by selling off deductions based on exorbitant appraisals. The program must not… be used as a lucrative tax shelter for the wealthy.”
Two Senate Democrats want Congress to approve national security-related tariffs. Sens. Tim Kaine of Virginia and Tom Carper of Delaware introduced a bill yesterday to allow the president to only temporarily implement tariffs for national national security reasons. The import levies could remain in effect for 120 days but would expire if not approved by a simple majority in both chambers.
“Life is complicated. Filing your taxes shouldn’t be…” The tax code remains difficult to administer, burdensome for many households, and easy for to evade. This raises costs to taxpayers and the government. An underfunded IRS prevents it from conducting effective audits, assisting taxpayers, and protecting vulnerable taxpayers from fraud and identity theft. The Bipartisan Policy Center, the Tax Foundation, and Prosperity Now will host a conference on Monday April 8 to explore how to make tax administration more efficient and equitable. The event marks the release of a new paper from BPC’s Jason Fichtner, Van Scoyoc Associates’ Jeff Trinca, and TPC’s Bill Gale.
The TCJA was supposed to help US-based multinationals compete and create domestic jobs. How’s it going? The Wall Street Journal reports (paywall) on Procter & Gamble’s warning that the new tax law may make it less globally competitive and reduce its incentive to invest in the United States. P&G pays between 18-19 percent of its non-US income in foreign taxes, a share the company thought would be sufficient to prevent it from paying a new US minimum tax. But it’s not. P&G expects to pay the US $100 million a year in the TCJA's new new minimum tax, known as the Global Intangible Low-Taxed Income tax, or GILTI. Indeed, at least 24 of the 40 corporate members of the Alliance for Competitive Taxation will be paying GILTI.
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