Congressional Leaders Call for Input on Tax Reform
On June 27, the Senate Finance Committee announced that it would be pursuing a "blank-slate" approach to tax reform.
In a letter to Senate colleagues, Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) and ranking member Orrin Hatch (R-Utah) explained that the blank-slate approach would strip from the tax code all exclusions, deductions, credits and other preferences that some refer to as "tax expenditures." Baucus and Hatch asked colleagues to submit proposals for what tax expenditures and other provisions should be added back to a reformed tax code.
While the letter stresses the importance of starting from scratch, it also states that the "blank slate is not, of course, the end product, nor the end of the discussion."
Senators have until July 26 to submit their proposals. Baucus says committee staff will work over the August recess on a bill that will be released in the fall and marked up later in the year. House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp (R-Mich.) applauded the Senate's effort and said he is hopeful about cooperation in the House.
The Charitable Giving Coalition, of which CASE is a member, sent a letter to Baucus and Hatch on July 11 urging them to preserve the charitable deduction and stressing that it clearly meets the criteria established in their letter:
Advances important policy objectives
Helps bolster the economy
Makes the tax code fairer
CASE will continue to monitor any developments on tax reform and work to preserve the charitable deduction in its current form as well as the permanent extension of the IRA Charitable Rollover.