The Tax Policy Blog

June 25, 2008

Yesterday, several Tax Foundation staffers and interns attended a hearing held by the House Judiciary Committee's Subcommittee on Commercial and Administrative Law. The subject of the hearing was H.R. 5267, the Business Activity Tax Simplification Act of 2008 (BATSA), and the Tax Foundation submitted testimony analyzing the issue of business presence for taxation purposes.

As the world economy becomes more integrated, it is growing easier to move...

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June 25, 2008

At yesterday's hearing on H.R. 5267 (the Business Activity Tax Simplification Act or "BATSA"; see Joseph Henchman's post below for background), one of two groups testifying in opposition was the National Governor's Association. As part of its testimony, NGA resurrected its...

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June 24, 2008

A new Tax Foundation Fiscal Fact examines a package of proposed subsidies and special tax breaks for favored industries, currently under consideration in the Arizona state legislature. Typically, with packages of lobbyist-driven handouts such as these, the actual value to state residents is inversely proportional to the sponsors' soaring language regarding their benefits. So when Arizonans are told that the package's effects will be "bringing in new manufacturing jobs,...

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June 24, 2008

We had a blog post last week about efforts to get the IRS to increase the mileage reimbursement rates used to calculate deductible expenses, and the inequity between different rates for different purposes. The inequity remains, but the IRS announced yesterday an increase in some mileage reimbursement rates:

  • Business - 58.5 cents per mile (up from 50.5 cents)
  • Medical - 27...
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June 24, 2008

In testimony submitted today to the Commercial and Administrative Law Subcommittee of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee, Tax Foundation Tax Counsel Joseph Henchman outlined the importance of a consistent and predictable presence-based standard for business taxation.

"Today, with new technologies, even the smallest businesses can sell their products and services in all fifty states through the Internet and through the mail," Henchman wrote in his testimony. "If such sales can now...

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June 23, 2008

Bloomberg is reporting that the U.S.'s status as the country with the second-highest overall corporate tax rate among industrialized nations could be coming to an end as the Japanese government has announced that it will consider cutting its top-ranked corporate tax in order to attract foreign investment and spur economic growth. http://www.bloomberg.com/apps/news?pid=20601068&sid=a0c9fhwz8QBU...

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June 23, 2008

Back in February, the Virginia Supreme Court invalidated seven regional taxes levied by the unelected Northern Virginia Transportation Authority (NVTA). Government officials reacted predictably-they proposed re-imposing the taxes statewide, and threatened to cancel most transportation projects unless it happens. It's not quite as bad as when ...

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June 23, 2008

With governments at all levels exhorting citizens to be more efficient in their gasoline usage, it seems surprising that local governments are slapping car sharing services (such as Zipcar) with punitive taxes.

An article in last week's Wall Street Journal looks at the trend, which usually takes the form of imposing a fixed tax on both rental car companies and car sharing services if a car is...

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June 22, 2008
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June 20, 2008

Mark Robyn first came to the Tax Foundation in September 2007 as an intern. During his internship he helped with the development of certain areas of the Tax Foundation's federal income tax computer simulation, including the AMT, the earned income tax credit, and the child tax credit. He also helped gather data for the most recent publication of the "Facts and Figures" state rankings booklet. Mark's outstanding work during his internship earned him a permanent...

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June 20, 2008

Medicare pays out approximately $400 billion in benefits to 43 million Americans every year. Of course, some of this tax money comes from medical service providers, who send taxes to the IRS in April and receive payments all year long. At least, that is how it is supposed to work. Today's Wall Street Journal reports on a...

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June 20, 2008

Our latest video released last week, "Takin' on the Tax Code," is the featured front page item in today's Hawaii Reporter.

Thanks to Paul E. Smith for the tip!

Watch it again:

...

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June 19, 2008

Earlier this week we linked to George H.W. Bush's 1988 video pledging "no new taxes" (see Read My Lips). Today we go four years before that, to 1984 Democratic Presidential Nominee Walter Mondale's convention acceptance speech, where he promised to raise taxes:

...

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June 19, 2008

Both Senator McCain and Senator Obama favor a cap and trade system as a means of limiting American's reliance on carbon-based products. A cap and trade system has the effect of a carbon tax except that it is managed through a regulatory regime rather than the tax code.

Thanks to our neighbors to the North, we no longer have to speculate what the debate will look like when the next president introduces his solution to global climate change. Canadian Liberal Leader Stephane Dion has...

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June 18, 2008

Congratulations to Delaware, which this week received an unexpected $63.3 million corporate income tax payment. The payment, equivalent to about 1.5% of Delaware's $4.2 billion FY 2008 budget, was so surprising that state tax officials at first thought the wire transfer was intended for New York or California and mistakenly sent to Delaware. Instead, it was apparently the tax...

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Subscribe to Tax Foundation - Tax Foundation's Tax Policy Blog The Tax Policy Blog is the official blog of the Tax Foundation, a non-partisan, non-profit research organization that has monitored tax policy at the federal, state and local levels since 1937. Our economists welcome your feedback. If you would like to send an e-mail to the author of a blog post, please click on that person's name to locate his or her e-mail address or visit our staff page here.

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