The voices of Tax Policy Center's researchers and staff
More about the new IRS cybercrime division. Tax Analysts reports that it will handle “large-scale, multi-jurisdictional, and international cases that facilitate stolen identity refund fraud or that affect tax administration.” Its main base of operations will be in Washington, DC, and it will have points of contact in IRS Criminal Investigation divisions in 25 states. There have been 270 large data breaches involving 100 million records in 2015 so far. The IRS Criminal Investigation division has 2,500 agents, the lowest level in over three decades. But it won’t add staff for the new cybercrime unit.
Ben Carson hops on the flat tax bandwagon. Neurosurgeon and GOP hopeful Ben Carson told Fox News on Sunday that he backs a flat tax with a rate “somewhere between 10 and 15 percent.” Fox host Chris Wallace told Carson the revenue-neutral rate would have to be substantially higher—in the “low to mid 20 percent range.” Carson didn’t give an inch: “Wrong,” he told Wallace. Here’s the transcript.
Some House Democrats would like a medical device tax repeal by Memorial Day. Eighteen representatives warn House Speaker John Boehner that the 2.3 percent tax on medical devices “puts the discovery of new breakthrough medical technologies at risk.” It’s not clear that the House will have time to debate a repeal, given debates over trade, highway funding and surveillance bills.
Australia has a plan for global corporate taxation. The nation’s top finance official will introduce legislation to require global corporations to pay a “fair amount” of tax on Australian earnings. This could increase government revenue by billions of dollars a year. The budget will also include the so-called “Netflix tax.” That’s the 10 per cent goods and service tax which will be extended to digital downloads from abroad. That tax is expected to raise $350 million over four years.
And Indonesia plans to cut its corporate tax rate. It would like to discourage companies from shifting their profits to low-tax countries like Singapore. Indonesia’s current corporate tax rate is 25 percent would be lowered gradually to 17.8 or 17.5 percent.
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