The Tax Policy Blog

October 01, 2014

In July, the DC Council approved a major tax reform that cuts income and business taxes, expands the low-income tax credit, and applies sales tax to items exempt by historical accident, all based on the recommendations of a blue-ribbon commission. Effective today, consumers must pay the 5.75 percent sales tax on the following transactions:

  • Bottled water delivery
  • Storage rentals and leases, including...
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September 30, 2014

We've been asked which states adjust their gasoline tax for inflation. Most states (and the federal government) define their gas tax in so many cents per gallon, which can make a difference as time passes and inflation erodes the purchasing power of that tax rate. For example, the federal motor fuels tax today generates one-third fewer dollars in real terms since 1993, when it was last increased....

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September 30, 2014

In June 2014, the Internal Revenue Service released a “Taxpayer Bill of Rights” at the recommendation of the Taxpayer Advocate Service. The publication attempts to clearly outline the fundamental rights a taxpayer has when filing their returns and dealing with the IRS in general.

In an attempt to further distribute this information, the IRS created a YouTube video on the...

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September 30, 2014

Last week, Chile’s President Michelle Bachelet signed legislation that would reform much of Chile’s tax system in order to raise tax revenue for the...

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September 30, 2014

Chile has for many years had one of the lowest corporate tax rates in the developed world, and also one of the fastest rates of economic growth. Between 2000 and 2010, Chile’s corporate tax rate was 15 to 17 percent, lower than that found in any developed country except Ireland. Over the same period, Chile’s economy grew about 45 percent, more than any country in South...

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September 29, 2014

According to this year’s International Tax Competitiveness Index, Estonia has the most competitive tax system in the developed world.

Key drivers for Estonia’s high rank are its relatively low corporate tax rate at 21 percent with no double taxation of dividend income, a nearly flat 21 percent income tax rate, a property tax that only taxes the value of land and not the value of building and...

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September 29, 2014

Morgan Stanley, six years after getting bailed out by taxpayers, is now doing research on inequality. The former investment bank released a report last week that attributes growing inequality to many factors, including taxes:

Though tax policies are still largely supportive of lower income groups, they have become less progressive over time.

Wrong. The chart below,...

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September 29, 2014

The Senate this month unanimously passed a bill exempting welfare benefits under Native American tribal jurisdictions from being counted as “income” for the purposes of income tax. The bill passed by voice vote in the House.

This bill was uncontroversial, largely because it is good policy. It resembles the way that the IRS already treats state welfare benefits....

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September 29, 2014

Each year, the Council on State Taxation (COST) estimates the share of total state and local taxes that are paid by businesses. The lastest edition of the report found that firms paid 44.9 percent of total U.S. state and local taxes last year—amounting to nearly $671 billion.

Here’s the breakdown by tax type (click to enlarge and share):

...

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September 26, 2014

At the Clinton Global Initiative meeting earlier this week, former President Bill Clinton called for a lower corporate tax rate, saying that the average corporate tax rate across the OECD (25.3 percent) provides a good target for where our corporate tax rate should be. But in his talk—which included discussion of ...

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September 26, 2014

New York Mayor Bill de Blasio is considering a proposal that would place a property tax surcharge on residences that are worth $5 million or more and owned by non-New Yorkers, according to the Wall Street Journal. The surcharge was proposed by the ...

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September 26, 2014

Pennsylvania Governor Tom Corbett (R) signed a bill this week allowing Philadelphia’s school district to raise cigarette taxes by $2. This comes after Pennsylvania considered several different cigarette tax increase proposals. The statewide cigarette tax rate is...

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September 25, 2014

The chart below has been going around the web this week. It is from an analysis by Pavlina Tcherneva of Bard College that used Piketty and Saez IRS data to show that in non-recessionary periods from 1949 to 2012, the share of total income growth has increasingly accrued to the top 10 percent, while the bottom 90 percent’s share has declined.

While this does reflect the general decline in wage growth in the last few decades, there are issues with this data. People reading this chart...

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September 25, 2014

The OECD’s base erosion and profit shifting (BEPS) initiative promises an integrated, streamlined tax system across the OECD. The initiative, which should be completed in September of 2015, will provide guidelines for member countries to follow when implementing domestic tax policy or negotiating a tax treaty. The initiative is intended to reduce double non-taxation of corporate profits, which in turn should reduce conflict between tax...

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September 25, 2014

It has not been a good month for professional football. A recent spate of domestic violence incidents has called the moral leadership of the National Football League into question. In addition, concerns about the Washington Redskins’ team name remain a steady source of bad press.

In this climate, some members of Congress, upset over the NFL’s recent...

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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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