“We’re just getting started…” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell signaled that the amendment process for the bipartisan infrastructure bill would be no small affair. Meanwhile, centrist Democratic Senator Joe Manchin said that he’d back Senate Majority Leader Schumer shutting down debate to force a final infrastructure vote this week, reiterating that he’d support taking up the budget resolution next week.
Meanwhile, the infrastructure bill would end one tax break a bit early. The employee retention payroll tax credit would expire on Sept. 30 instead of Dec. 31. The Joint Committee on Taxation estimated that the earlier end date would save $8.2 billion. The credit was established in the CARES Act of March 2020 and expanded in subsequent relief laws. Bloomberg reported that larger companies have used the credit, but overall, few companies have.
Whither tax reporting for cryptocurrency transactions? Republican Sent. Rob Portman and Sen. Patrick Toomey don’t agree on how best to increase reporting of cryptocurrency transactions, currently a provision of the $1 trillion infrastructure bill. Sen. Portman helped craft the language, and Sen. Toomey warns the language is too broad. Senate Finance Committee Chair Ron Wyden wants to assure that proposed rules don’t apply to developers of blockchain technology who might face difficulty complying.
President Trump’s attorney will fight release of Trump’s tax returns. Unsurprisingly, Trump attorney Ronald Fischetti asserted "There is no evidence of any wrongdoing here and I object to the release of the returns not only on behalf of my client but on behalf of all future holders of the office of the president of the United States.” The US Department of Justice has directed Treasury to provide the documents to the Ways and Means committee, which had requested Trump’s tax returns two years ago.
Kansas and Texas tax revenues: Up, for now. Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly announced that Kansas’ July tax receipts performed 11 percent, or $60 million, better than the state’s forecast for the month, with total tax receipts of $602.6 million. Kelly said “Our July tax collection numbers are encouraging, but we must maintain fiscally-responsible policies to ensure our continued growth.” Texas Comptroller Glenn Hegar said Texas sales tax revenue totaled $3.4 billion in July, or 14 percent more than collected in July 2020. Hegar said “The sharpest increase from a year ago was in receipts from oil and gas mining… the higher crude oil prices of recent months support increased drilling activity, albeit still well below the pre-pandemic pace.”
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