The Senate voted overwhelmingly on Wednesday to attach an amendment repealing the new 1099 reporting requirement to the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reauthorization legislation.
The amendment, sponsored by Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), completely repeals the expanded 1099 reporting requirement in the new health care law and pays for the repeal with unspent appropriated funds, or already appropriated money from various federal agencies, as directed by the Office of Management and Budget. The amendment passed 81-17 with unanimous Republican support and thirty-four Democrats voting in favor. The bipartisan nature of the vote was in stark contrast to the amendment that would have repealed the entire health care bill, offered by Senator McConnell (R-KY), that failed on a party-line vote.
“Today we provided a common-sense solution for business owners so they can focus on creating jobs, not filling out paperwork for the IRS,” said Senator Stabenow in a press release. “Since last year, I have worked with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to address this problem. If left unchecked, 40 million small businesses would see their IRS 1099 paperwork increase 2000 percent.”
The Stabenow amendment was offered to the FAA bill at the last second and is almost identical to an amendment initially offered by Senator Mike Johanns (R-NE), with the only difference being the departments from which the offset could be taken. “I think my friends on the other side of the aisle saw that the handwriting was on the wall,” Johanns said. “They couldn’t let the train leave the station, if you will… But I was very, very happy to vote for my amendment and vote ‘yes’ and see 81 votes for it, whether it had her name on it or my name on it.”
Because revenue measures must originate in the House of Representatives, the fate of the amendment is unknown. House Republicans have made 1099 repeal one of their top priorities, but it is unknown if the Stabenow “pay-for” is acceptable to the majority or if the Republican vehicle for passage could also pass the Senate.