The Tax Policy Blog

June 06, 2014

In 2005, Congress created a large omnibus tax bill called the Tax Increase Prevention and Reconciliation Act of 2005 (TIPRA.) Like most large tax bills, it had some actually-important provisions, like its two-year extension of President Bush’s reduced rate on capital gains.

However, like most large tax bills, it had some trivial and weird provisions as well. One of these provisions was a small, barely-noticeable change to the foreign housing exclusion.

The foreign housing...

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June 06, 2014

Last month, Cleveland voters renewed county taxes on a variety of "sin" products (4.5 cents per pack of cigarettes, 1.5 cents per 12-ounce bottle of beer, 6 cents per 750-milliliter bottle of wine, 32 cents per gallon of mixed beverages, 24 cents per gallon of cider and $3 per gallon of hard liquor) that fund local sports stadiums for the Browns, Cavaliers, and Indians....

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June 06, 2014

An article from the Austin American Statesman has been making the rounds lately, discussing how property values in Austin have risen precipitously, and thus taxes have risen too. Property taxes form the lion’s share of taxes for Texan local governments, so tend to be a...

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June 05, 2014

Early this week, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation touted a new study which found that taxing a sugary drink based on the amount of calories it contains rather than its size would be more effective in reducing caloric consumption.

According to the study, a .04 cent per-calorie tax on sugary drinks would reduce beverage-based calorie...

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June 05, 2014

The U.S. Public Interest Research Group (USPIRG) and the Citizens for Tax Justice (CTJ), have released a report called “Offshore Shell Games 2014,” which claims that Fortune 500 companies use more than one thousand subsidiaries in foreign countries in order to avoid U.S. corporate taxes. It also claims that the average effective tax rate of 55 corporations was under 10 percent on their foreign...

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June 05, 2014

Earlier this week, the Environmental Protection Agency outlined a new plan to reduce carbon emissions. This “Clean Power Plan” is based on what is, for the EPA's CO2-related initiatives if not for other pollutants, a new strategy: outlining broad state-level goals for reducing emissions-per-megawatt hour of electricity, instead of regulating power plants directly. This “...

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June 05, 2014

Sometimes IRS publications go to unexpected places:

Kidnapped child.  You may be able to treat your child as meeting the residency test even if the child has been kidnapped. See Publication 501 for details.

This comes across awkwardly, to say the least. In response to a kidnapping, the best condolences the IRS can offer are that your son or daughter may still count...

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June 05, 2014

Last Thursday, state lawmakers in North Carolina passed legislation building upon the comprehensive tax reform passed in the Tar Heel State last year, notably eliminating all municipal privilege taxes and reforming the treatment of net operating loss carryforwards in the corporate income tax code. Just hours after it was approved by the legislature, Governor Pat McCrory ...

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June 04, 2014

The Wall Street Journal reports that Japan will likely reduce its corporate tax rate starting next year, possibly in stages down to around 25 or 30 percent. This would make Japan more competitive with its nearest neighbors, particularly China which has a 25 percent corporate tax rate. Currently, Japan has...

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June 04, 2014

The Alaska Permanent Fund is a fund established by the Alaskan constitution that provides an income to permanent residents of Alaska. The payouts are modest, only a couple thousand dollars a year at most, but they’re not trivial to Alaskan residents.

Under current law, this constitutes taxable income. Given that the Alaska Permanent Fund is so unique in the United States, the tax policy governing it is also unique and...

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June 03, 2014

This week’s tax map takes a look at state gasoline tax rates, using data from a recent report by the American Petroleum Institute. California is in 1st place with the highest rate of 52.89 cents per gallon, and is followed closely by New York (49.86 cents/gallon), Connecticut (49.3 cents/gallon), and Hawaii (48.05 cents/gallon). On the other end of the spectrum, Alaska has the lowest rate at 12.4...

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June 02, 2014

In early May Senators Tom Harkin (D-IA) and Richard Blumenthal (D-CT) introduced a bill called the, "Stop Subsidizing Childhood Obesity Act of 2014." The bill targets business by eliminating the income tax deduction for advertising and marketing expenses for companies that market unhealthy foods to children. The bill uses the tax increase on these businesses to help fund the Department of...

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June 02, 2014

“In a strong rejection of the current tax code, 90 percent of respondents believe income from investments should be taxed at least as much as wages.”

That was a finding from a recent survey from Wallet Hub.

Fortunately for that 90 percent of respondents, their wish is a reality.

Warren Buffett and His Secretary

Wallet Hub explains the tax code’s treatment of investment income in...

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May 30, 2014

The unique puzzle Rhode Island faces—high public spending, low per-capita income relative to its neighbors—means the state has become notorious for high tax rates on nearly everything. In 2010, the state took a positive first step by reducing the top individual income tax bracket from 9.9 percent...

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May 30, 2014

Regular readers of this blog have followed the DC tax reform process, from the hearings of the Tax Revision Commission last year, to their final report this February, to Mayor Gray’s budget proposal, to the vote this week to ...

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Subscribe to Tax Foundation - Tax Foundation's Tax Policy Blog The Tax Policy Blog is the official weblog 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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