Congressional Republicans say they have hashed out the final details of their sweeping tax bill and are planning to hold final votes on the conference committee report early next week.
The negotiated plan includes a 21 percent corporate tax rate and a 37 percent top tax rate for individuals, beginning in 2018. “Pass-through” businesses that pay taxes through the individual side of the tax code would get a 20 percent deduction. The corporate alternative minimum tax (AMT), which was in the Senate bill, has been scrapped. The conference committee has also reportedly agreed that the final bill will repeal the individual mandate in the Affordable Care Act that requires all Americans to have health insurance or pay a fine.
The plan also includes several changes for individual tax deductions, including lowering the cap on the mortgage interest deduction to $750,000 and allowing taxpayers to write off up to $10,000 of state income or property taxes.
Though some changes have leaked out, the legislative text and final score from the Joint Committee on Taxation are expected to be released tomorrow. The bill also has to be vetted by the Senate parliamentarian for potential violations of the Byrd Rule. If it passes muster (and is found not to significantly increase the deficit beyond the $1.5 trillion limit), the Senate plans to vote on the bill first, on Monday or Tuesday, and the House will follow.
ASAE – along with many others – will be scrutinizing the final legislative text closely once it’s released to evaluate what provisions in the bill impact associations and other tax-exempt organizations. Provisions in the Senate bill to tax royalty income, apply intermediate sanction rules to 501(c)(6) organizations, and eliminate deferred compensation plans for tax-exempt groups were all removed before final passage but there are other concerns still on the table, such as a proposed excise tax on executive compensation over $1 million. The Senate bill had reworked this provision to grandfather in compensation arrangements for for-profit corporations and ASAE had made the case that the same protections should be afforded to tax-exempt organizations as a matter of fairness.
ASAE will issue an analysis of the bill’s impact on tax-exempt organizations once legislative text is released.