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THERE IT IS: The bipartisan infrastructure bill finally arrived late Sunday after being so close to completion for days.
And as expected, the most interesting part of the 2,700-page bill from a tax perspective was the late addition of new tax reporting rules for cryptocurrencies – which raised billions and billions of dollars to pay for infrastructure.
Industry representatives have been working for days to restrict what they consider to be too broad a language in infrastructure legislation, as our Kellie Mejdrich and Brian Faler reported.
Senator Rob Portman (R-Ohio), the leading GOP negotiator for the infrastructure proposal, is one of the lawmakers best at dealing with virtual currency issues. Interestingly, however, it wasn’t just industry circles that were concerned that Portman’s proposal would miss the mark.
Finance Senate Chairman Ron Wyden (D-Ore.) Tweeted on Sunday that using digital currencies to evade taxes was a real problem – something IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig has also stressed.
But the bipartisan group’s attempt at a solution, Wyden added, was “an attempt to apply the rules of the Internet and not understand how the technology works.”
In essence, the Infrastructure Act would try to treat cryptocurrency trading similarly to selling a stock, forcing brokers to report matters like sale prices. Portman’s staff have said that the industry’s fears are exaggerated – that the provision, at its core, is merely intended to make it clear that brokers who enable trades must follow standard reporting requirements.
But while there may not be much they can do about it, crypto advocates fear the new proposal could stifle innovation in the industry.
MORE ABOUT EVERYTHING IN BRIEF, but welcome to the 2,700 page beach reader version of Weekly Tax. Your writer will spend the next few days in The Nation’s Summer Capital, hoping to see a full print out somewhere on the beach.
So people used to send out birthday cards? Today it’s 163 years since the mailbox made its American debut, with more than 30 on Boston’s busiest boulevards.
Even send it by post! We’re here for your tips and feedback.
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THE SUPPLY ANGLE: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has stated in advance that she will not allow the bipartisan measure to be considered until the Senate also passes this $ 3.5 trillion reconciliation measure, that would advance other important democratic priorities.
A potential problem with this: Senator Joe Manchin (DW.Va.) holds long before the guarantee that this will happen, as our Kelsey Tamborrino reported. “We will get the budget decision. Let’s start the process and then see where it leads, ”Manchin said on CNN’s State of the Union.
Senate Democrats are still planning to pass a budget resolution before saying goodbye to Washington in August. For their part, some have always openly advocated that tax hikes by the Democrats do not hinder businesses and the economy too much.
“You will make adjustments to the tax law. Will we still be competitive? ”Manchin asked on CBS’s” Face the Nation “.
TURN IT AROUND: The Justice Department switched fields on Friday and said the IRS should pass former President Donald Trump’s tax returns to Congress, Brian reported.
This, of course, is quite a departure from the view of the Justice Department under Trump, when it insisted that the House Democrats’ stated reason for demanding Trump’s return – to review how presidents are screened – was an excuse to validate their real intentions to disguise. (The Republicans on the House Ways and Means Committee said as much on Sunday night.)
Now under President Joe Biden, the Department’s legal counsel has essentially countered that the legislature’s motion for returns should not be denied just because some Democrats hope it will contain embarrassing information
So the big question remains: How quickly could the Ways and Means Committee get their hands on Trump’s return? The Biden administration has said Trump’s legal team can act in court before abandoning the returns, and the federal judge overseeing the case, Trevor McFadden, has given the two sides until later this week to work something out.
But think long-term: Michael Stern, a former top House attorney, told Brian that there might be fewer chances this could drag on – but there certainly is still a chance, and Trump and his team still have enough tools in the tool box.
It’s also fair to note that some people on the left have beaten House Ways and Means chairman Richard Neal (D-Mass.) For not being aggressive enough on Trump’s tax returns, basically for as long as Neal was Hammer has held.
BRING US YOUR TOURISTS: Indonesia is giving yachts and cruise lines a big tax cut to attract more vacationers, reports Bloomberg. The country’s tax office announced over the weekend that these boats will no longer have to pay 75 percent luxury tax, and a spokesman said the government believes it can do a lot more to boost water tourism. The government will also exempt certain boats for public transport, according to the tax office, but some ships will still have to pay the luxury tax. Indonesia has lagged some of its neighbors in the past in introducing cruises and is generally trying to boost a tourism sector hard hit by the pandemic – though those efforts have been hampered by a resurgence of the coronavirus in Bali.
HOW DEAD IS IT? West Virginia Governor Jim Justice said his efforts to abolish state income tax “are dead as can be,” WVNews reports. But wait, there’s more: the judiciary added that his Republican counterparts in the state legislature “will absolutely regret” not going along with his plan. Interestingly, the governor also blamed the provision in this year’s Democratic coronavirus bailout package – which was no less championed by Manchin – that banned states from using aid funds to cut taxes to put the final nail in the coffin of its killing plans to poke the income tax. For now, at least: Roger Hanshaw, spokesman for West Virginia House, said the state could look at tax breaks again in a few years, when tax break restrictions expire. (States are also arguing this provision in court.) The judiciary had proposed that income tax should be phased out and that sales tax and other levies should be increased at the same time.
WSJ: “How a landlord who makes $ 75,000 a year could end up in the millionaire tax bracket.”
Illinois says Trump should get a million dollar tax refund on one of its buildings, but Cook County refuses to give it.
BBC: “Beyond Meat-Chef supports the tax on meat consumption.”
Perhaps not in terms of tax policy, but Elon Musk called the Apple App Store a “de facto global tax on the Internet”.
In 1923, the postal department required that every house have a mailbox or mail slot.