By Amy E. Ebeling
June 5, 2014
Over the past few years, we have all become accustomed to tax deductions, credits, and reduced rates expiring. We have also become accustomed to our elected officials debating until the very last minute about whether to extend sunsetting tax provisions. I am eager to report that 2014 will be no different – a senate bill to renew $85 billion in various tax breaks for individuals and businesses is likely stalled in the U.S. Senate until after the November elections.
Senate Bill 2260 titled EXPIRE (Expiring Provisions Improvement Reform and Efficiency) Act was introduced on April 28, 2014. The Bill moved through the Senate Finance Committee and the Senate moved to consider the Bill without amendments in mid-May. The Bill sought to extend approximately 50 temporary tax provisions known in Congress as the “tax extenders.” The tax extender provisions covered a variety of deductions and credits relating to homeownership, charitable giving, education, business research, depreciation, energy, and corporate taxation, including international taxation of business and the Work Opportunity Tax Credit. The tax extenders expired at the end of 2013 and the Bill sought to renew them through 2015.
This week Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid stated that due to Republican outrage over not being allowed to offer amendments to the Bill, the Bill would likely sit until after the November elections. A majority of 60 votes is required to end debate on any bill in the Senate. On May 15, the vote of 53-40 left the Bill open for debate. All GOP members except one voted against ending debate in protest of Reid’s refusal to consider amendments to the Bill. Reid stated yesterday that the Bill is likely deadlocked until November.
So, once again, the taxpayers (and those of us who work in the tax industry) are left to wait out Congress. There is nothing like the passing of a new tax bill to put everyone in the holiday spirit.
Follow Amy on Twitter @AmyTaxEsq
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