Lawmakers Begin Long Process That May Lead to Comprehensive Tax Reform

By SEMA Washington, D.C., Staff 

In his State of the Union Address, President Obama urged Congress to enact comprehensive tax reform legislation designed to simplify the tax code, close loopholes and lower business tax rates. He specifically called for lowering manufacturers’ tax rates to 25%, making permanent the SEMA-supported research and development tax credit, implementing a tax on earnings from overseas sources and increasing incentives for companies to hire new workers.

Congress is now taking the first steps to consider such reforms. Leaders of the House Ways and Means Committee, the primary tax-writing committee in Congress, announced the formation of 11 separate “tax reform working groups” within the Committee’s membership. The bipartisan groups will each focus on a different issue, including manufacturing, energy, income and tax distribution and small business/pass-throughs. They will then obtain input from stakeholders, academics, practitioners, the general public and other members of Congress. When work is completed, the Joint Committee on Taxation will deliver a report to the Ways and Means Committee by April 15, 2013.

While these initial steps are promising for a larger comprehensive tax reform legislative package, the process is only beginning and includes many unknowns. SEMA will remain engaged in these efforts toward a simpler tax code and provide updates as reform efforts continue. 

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