Legislation

Tax

Federal Lawmakers Fail in Push for Stimulus Bill

The clock kept ticking, and members of various congressional committees kept arguing, and in the end, the vast economic stimulus package was left on the cutting room floor.The hope was for agreement on various features that would boost spending and put more money into the economy.

New Social Security Proposals Unveiled

The following article is provided courtesy of CCH, Inc.Following the recent release of Social Security reform proposals by a presidential commission, congressional leaders unveiled proposals of their own that would establish personal retirement accounts within the system.The Social Security Guarantee Plus Plan (HR 3497) was introduced on December 13 by House Ways and Means Social Security Subcommittee Chairman E. Clay Shaw, Jr., R-Fla.
Tax

Bush Backs Off on AMT Repeal

While Congress debates possible scenarios for an economic stimulus package that will accelerate tax cuts and provide additional relief, President Bush is adding some incentives of his own to move the legislation along.On Tuesday, the White House announced it would back off on its pressure to include a repeal of the corporate alternative minimum tax in the economic stimulus package.
Technology

President Signs Bill Banning Internet Taxes

President Bush has signed into law the two-year moratorium on Internet access taxes. The bill effectively slows progress on attempts by states to impose an Internet sales tax.Congress had hoped to tie the issue of whether to allow states to collect sales tax on Internet sales to the bill, but the issue has been tabled for now.President Bush commented, "The Internet is an innovative force that enables such applications as distance learning, video conferencing, and precision farming.
Tax

Congress At Odds Over Relief for Terrorism Victims

The following article is provided courtesy of CCH, Inc.When lawmakers begin their post-Thanksgiving recess conference on the Victims of Terrorism Tax Relief Bill of 2001 (HR 2884), which would provide income, estate, and payroll tax relief to victims of recent terrorist attacks, they will find that the Senate version, which was passed on November 16, contains a great deal more detail than the House's version of the bill, which was approved on Sep
Tax

Senate Pushing for Social Security Holiday

Senate Republicans are hopeful that they can tie a one-month Social Security holiday for all workers and employers to the economic stimulus package that is currently before Congress.

Plan for National Sales Tax Holiday is Shelved

A Congressional push for legislation that would stimulate holiday shopping by providing a national sales tax holiday has met with delays that will likely prevent the holiday from occurring before the end of the year.Although many Senators favor the proposed amendment to a national economic stimulus package, the topic probably won't be discussed in the Senate again until later this week at the earliers.
Tax

Senate Approves Tax Relief Bill

The following article is provided courtesy of CCH, Inc.The Senate on November 16 approved, by voice vote, legislation that would provide tax relief to survivors and victims of the September 11 terrorist attacks. The measure, Victims of Terrorism Relief Bill of 2001 (HR 2884), would grant victims' families an exemption from estate and income taxes.Senate Finance Committee ranking member Charles E.
Tax

President Approves IRS Funding, Expects Better Service

It looks like our tax collectors will be with us for another year. President Bush signed the legislation that provides funding for the Treasury Department and the IRS for fiscal year 2002.
Tax

New Rebate Checks May Delay Spring Tax Refunds

Part of the $100 billion tax stimulus package passed last week by the House includes a plan to offer a second wave of income tax rebate checks, this time to lower income people who may not have qualified for the rebate checks that were dispatched earlier this year.The Senate is currently deliberating on a similar tax stimulus bill that also includes a tax rebate program.
Tax

Senate Considers 50% Bonus Depreciation Legislation

Senator Orrin Hatch, R-UT, a member of the Senate Finance Committee, has introduced legislation that would provide a temporary 50% bonus depreciation deduction for all businesses that purchase fixed assets during the period between September 11, 2001, and July 1, 2002.The Economic Stimulus Through Bonus Depreciation Act of 2001, Senate bill 1553, offers businesses the 50% first-year bonus depreciation in addition to the normal depreciation deduction, computed as if the bonus depreciation did not exist.
Technology

Congress Ban on Internet Access Tax to Expire

The moratorium on taxes that target the Internet is set to expire this weekend. The House last week voted to extend the moratorium for two years, but objections of several Senators to the fact that taxes on Internet sales were not addressed by the House bill interfered with passage. Both the House and Senate are now in recess until Tuesday.The House chose to isolate the issue of the moratorium on tax on Internet access charges by passing a bill that dealt only with that aspect of Internet taxation.
Tax

House Bill Would Allow Disclosure of Taxpayer Information

House Bill H.R. 2975, the Patriot Act of 2001, if made into law, will authorize disclosure of taxpayer information to the Justice and Treasury departments, federal law enforcement, as well as federal intelligence agencies that are investigating terrorist organizations and related activities.Some tax practitioners have voiced a concern that such a bill will weaken important restrictions on disclosing tax information.
Tax

Senator Daschle Denounces Cut in Capital Gain Tax

Rivals in Washington are lining up on both sides of an issue that has been smoldering for years.
Tax

House Approves Non-Itemizer Charitable Deduction

The House of Representatives has approved a bill that would permit not-itemizing taxpayers to deduct on their tax returns up to $25 per year in charitable giving, beginning in 2002. For a taxpayer in the 15 percent bracket, this would represent approximately $3 in tax savings.Under the terms of the House bill, the amount of allowable deduction for charitable contributions would increase to $100 over the next ten years.
Tax

Flat Tax Resurfaces

Representative John Linder (R-GA) and Representative Collin Peterson (D-MN) have introduced legislation which they feel will "level the playing field for average Americans."The legislation, H.R. 2525, is called the FairTax Act, and was first introduced without success in 1999. The bill currently awaits consideration by the House Ways and Means Committee.The FairTax Act would institute a flat rate consumption tax, replacing the current income tax as well as the payroll tax.
Tax

IRS Going After Stock Purchase Plans

The Internal Revenue Service has announced its intention to consider applying Social Security tax to stock purchase plans.A stock purchase plan permits employees to buy shares in their company stock at a discount - typically 15 percent below market price.The IRS has decided that it might want to impose the Social Security tax (7.65 percent to the employee and a matching 7.65 percent to the employer) on the difference between the stock's market price and the discounted purchase price.The IRS cla

SEC Chair Would Reexamine Fair Disclosure Rule

Harvey Pitt, President Bush's selection for chairman of the Securities and Exchange commission, has indicated that, if confirmed, he would be willing to address the burdens placed on companies by Regulation Fair Disclosure (Reg FD). Reg FD, one of former SEC chairman Arthur Levitt's pet projects, requires publicly held companies to provide information that could influence the purchase of shares simultaneously to every potential investor.
Tax

Pending Legislation Will Increase Meal Deduction

The Senate is considering legislation that would accelerate the rise in the meals expense deduction for truck drivers to 80 percent. Under current law, truck drivers are entitled to deduct 60 percent of their allowable meal expenses. That percentage is scheduled to increase to 80 percent in 2008.The Small Business Works Act, proposed by Senator Christopher Bond (R-MO), would implement the increased meal deduction to 80 percent in 2002. The House passed legislation in March favoring this increase.
Tax

IRS Orders States: No Tax on Rebates

There are eight states that allow federal income taxes paid as a deduction on the state tax returns: Iowa, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Missouri, Montana, North Dakota, Oregon, and Utah.

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