Lunch Links: Britain Hints at Cutting Corporate Tax Rate Over EU Trade Impasse; Former Oregon Governor Against Gross Receipts Tax Measure; Voting to Legalize Marijuana in Massachusetts Could Lead to Higher Tax

October 26, 2016

Today is October 26, the date of the Gunfight at the O.K. Corral in 1881 in Tombstone, Arizona. Yes, there was a tax angle even to that: Tombstone was a center of smuggling of cattle, alcohol, and tobacco across the Mexican border into the United States, evading Mexican export taxes. Johnny Behan, the sheriff and local tax collector (he got to keep 10 percent of taxes he collected) protected the smugglers from the U.S. marshals (the Earps). The 30-second shootout between the two factions symbolized the lawlessness of the Old West.

Here are some interesting links I came across:

Who’s the Next Treasury Secretary? NBC News goes over the possible candidates. (NBC)

UK Might Do Bigger Corporate Tax Cut if EU Won’t Deal: As Britain and the European Union negotiate how much access British firms and citizens will have to EU markets, advisors to UK Prime Minister Theresa May (Conservative) say they may cut their corporate tax rate from 20 percent to 10 percent if the EU won’t negotiate seriously with them. (Reuters)

Tax Code Preferences for Real Estate: Diana Furchtgott-Roth lists them all—mortgage interest deduction, deduction of real estate taxes, exclusion of capital gains on sale of primary residence, like-kind exchanges, REIT corporate tax exemption, and low-income housing credit—and asks if they’re worth it. (Economics21)

Former Oregon Governor Criticizes Measure 97: Former Gov. John Kitzhaber (D), who resigned in 2015 after a scandal, urged his fellow Oregonians to vote no on Measure 97 in a Facebook post. He said the amount of money it would raise would likely be wasted without structural reforms to school spending. Read more on Measure 97 at our website. (Facebook)

Pros and Cons of Colorado Cigarette Tax Increase: The Coloradoan talks to voters and lays out the pros and cons of Amendment 72, which would triple the cigarette tax from 84 cents to $2.59 per pack. (Coloradoan)

Massachusetts May Seek Higher Marijuana Tax if Question 4 Passes: Massachusetts is one of five states voting on legalizing marijuana, and its proposed tax rate is 3.75 percent, plus the 6.25 percent sales tax, for a total of 10 percent. Officials say it should be higher. (The Recorder)

Overestimating Sales Tax Collections: Andrew Keatts at the Voice of San Diego makes a persuasive case that San Diego officials are greatly and systematically overestimating how much they’ll collect from sales tax. (Voice of San Diego)

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