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Indiana Can Challenge Obamacare Tax Credit Rule; Canadians Suing Over FATCA Law
Today's Taxpayer News!
A U.S. district judge ruled that Indiana can challenge an Obamacare tax credit rule. Indiana claims that enrolling for Obamacare through the federal exchange and gets tax credits is illegal. Read here for more!
Canadians are suing over the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (FATCA) for many reasons, including that it contradicts the constitutional principle “that Canada will not forfeit its sovereignty to a foreign state.”0 Comments | Post a Comment | Sign up for NTU Action Alerts
The Marketplace Fairness Act (MFA) “is the single biggest threat to taxpayers that is capable of passing this Congress,” stated NTU President Pete Sepp in a recent “Speaking of Taxpayers” podcast. The MFA would allow state governments to collect sales taxes from every online retailer that sells to consumers in their states, regardless of the state in which the retailer is located. The burden of this legislation would fall on businesses, having to file tax returns for every jurisdiction to which they send products. For more details on the MFA, check out NTU’s Internet Sales Tax Myths and Facts.
In order to inform voters about the consequences of this legislation passing, NTU has joined with the R Street Institute to tour the country on the Internet Sales Tax Road Show.
Below, Andrew Moylan of R Street and Pete talk to an audience in Columbus, Ohio about opposition to the MFA. Ohio voters overwhelmingly reject the idea of other state governments taxing Ohio’s online retailers, 56 percent to 31.
Ohio business owners were greatly concerned about the difficulties of complying with the MFA. An independent study found the cost to businesses of collecting taxes annually for nearly 10,000 existing jurisdictions can range from $57,500 to $260,000. The initial setup, integration, and implementation of the necessary software can cost an additional $80,000 to $290,000.
After the presentation, Pete discussed the hazards of passing the MFA with a local Columbus reporter from WBNS. Many state governments believe the MFA would provide a legal means to pad their coffers by allowing them to collect sales taxes on the online purchases of their constituents. However, with 46 states grabbing at online merchants’ revenues, many small businesses could end up closing shop, unable to afford the cost of compliance.
Look out for NTU and R Street in your state! For additional information and to keep up with the Road Show, head to ntu.org/internet_sales_tax or DontTaxTheInter.net for more in the effort to stop MFA.1 Comments | Post a Comment | Sign up for NTU Action Alerts
National Employee Freedom Week Helps Educate Union Members on their Rights
82.87 percent of Americans say union workers should be able to opt out without force or penalty. Many union members don’t know they already have that right.
National Employee Freedom Week (NEFW) is working to change just that. NEFW is a nationwide campaign to let employees know they have the freedom to opt-out of their union. Through a coalition of 77 groups in 44 states, NEFW aims to “empower workers by informing them of their choices, sharing alternatives that may better serve their needs and provided them the resources needed to make the choice that’s best for them.”
Among these options, NEFW emphasizes that employees in “Right-To-Work States” have the option to leave their union entirely. The National Right to Work Legal Defense Foundation, Inc. explains nearly half of the US—24 states —protect employees from being required to join unions. Even those living in “Non-Right-To-Work States,” have options within their union. Employees in these states can either become an agency fee payer that only pays for the non-political parts of union membership or become a religious/conscientious objector who does not fund the union whatsoever.
Alternative professional organizations provide additional options such as insurance and opportunities for professional development at a fraction of the cost of a union membership. For example, organizations such as the Association of American Educators offer insurance benefits for just $16.50 a month and cover $2 million in liability insurance.
Of 454 union members surveyed, NEFW found 136 wanted to leave their union. By increasing awareness through their August 10—16, 2014 campaign, NEFW can help union members to understand their options and weigh the opportunity cost of paying thousands of dollars in dues or freeing themselves from the unions.0 Comments | Post a Comment | Sign up for NTU Action Alerts
Technical difficulties during the rollout of Healthcare.gov, the online insurance plan exchange authorized by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and administered by the federal government, received plenty of scrutiny both in the media and on Capitol Hill. However, four states' independently-run exchanges -- in Maryland, Oregon, Massachusetts, and Nevada -- were also plagued by glitches and security concerns; so many, in fact, that all four have decided to either scrap their sites and start over, or opt into the federally-administered system. According to new information from the House Energy and Commerce Committee, taxpayers fronted $746 million worth of grants to get those failed exchanges up and running.
In this week's edition of The Taxpayer's Tab, NTUF featured legislation introduced by Congressman Tom Reed (R-NY) and Senator John Barrasso (R-WY) that would require those states to return the money to the federal government. The State Exchange Accountability Act would result in about $75 million per year being returned to the Treasury.
Also featured in this week's Tab:
Check out the latest edition online.0 Comments | Post a Comment | Sign up for NTU Action Alerts
With all their tax, communications, and research training, what will our NTU and NTUF interns be doing this fall? We asked them, and here’s what they said!
Government Affairs Interns:
Foundation Communications Interns:
Foundation Research Interns:
The Profiles in Liberty series will have one more instalment this summer. Stay tuned to Government Bytes to see what our interns have to say about their internship experience this summer.
Thanks to Catherine Fitzhugh for developing the Profiles in Liberty series and interviewing our interns.0 Comments | Post a Comment | Sign up for NTU Action Alerts
Rep. Jeb Hensarling on Ex-Im Bank - Speaking of Taxpayers, August 8
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House Financial Services Committee Chairman Jeb Hensarling (R-TX) joins the show to explain what's going on with Ex-Im on the Hill - and why it's so important we put an end to the "Bank of Boeing." Plus, Pete & Doug talk "inversions", FATCA, and good news on the BBA front... And, as always, the Outrage of the Week!0 Comments | Post a Comment | Sign up for NTU Action Alerts
Last week, Ken Blackwell, member of the board of directors for the National Taxpayers Union and director of the Coalition for Mortgage Security, wrote an article for Forbes praising Milton Friedman for his contribution to the understanding of free markets and advancement of individual rights in honor of the late economist’s 102nd birthday. In addition to outlining Friedman’s ideas regarding the role of government in civil society, Blackwell commends him for accurately predicting the growth of government and anti-market sentiments that has occurred in recent years.
Friedman believed that government responsibility should be limited to military defense, the enforcement of contracts between individuals, and the protection of citizens from crimes against themselves or their property. He further argued that government intervention in the economy ultimately leads to, “inefficiency, lack of motivation, and loss of freedom.” In his 1994 reintroduction to Friedrich Hayek’s The Road to Serfdom, Friedman suggested that “the battle for freedom” is one that “must be won over and over again.” Blackwell’s analysis of Friedman’s introduction to Hayek’s pivotal work sheds light on the dangers Americans face today as our government continues to expand, assault for-profit institutions, intervene in the healthcare market, and disregard private property rights.Thanks to Kelly Hastings for writing this post.0 Comments | Post a Comment | Sign up for NTU Action Alerts
The Obama Administration has stopped releasing Obamacare sign-up information since the month of May. They are reportedly nervous about releasing premium rates before the midterm elections. Daily Caller has the latest!
The Treasury Department released its quarterly list of Americans renouncing their citizenship. 2013 was a record high for U.S. expatriates and the trend still seems to be going up. According to Forbes, one of the reasons is because of the complex tax code and the requirement to file taxes even if you don’t work in the U.S.0 Comments | Post a Comment | Sign up for NTU Action Alerts
This is a follow-up to the earlier blog post, Corporate Inversion: Fleeing from the Terrifying Tax Code.
The fervor for inversion is not slowing down, especially now that Congress is in recess until September. With two bills left behind, H.R. 4679 in the House and S. 2360 in the Senate, Congress could address the issue during their short September session or in the subsequent lame duck session. While President Barack Obama and Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew condemn businesses as “unpatriotic” for trying to relocate, few policymakers attempt or even suggest specific comprehensive reforms to the tax code, despite admissions that the rate is the real problem. Instead, both bills retroactively change the IRS requirements for inversion to trap businesses in the U.S.
The high corporate tax rate reduces competitiveness for U.S. companies, causing many to analyze the costs and benefits of moving their headquarters abroad. Under the current law, some not-yet-incorporated, fledgling businesses will also decide that the U.S. is not an ideal country in which to open shop. The U.S. corporate income tax rate sits at 35 percent, considerably higher than the European Union average rate of 21.34 percent or the OECD average of 24.11 percent. Operating with at least a 10 percentage point tax advantage leaves foreign competitors with significantly more income for future investments, higher wages, or lower prices, with which U.S. companies struggle to compete.
With their additional expendable revenue, foreign corporations are increasingly viewing U.S. companies as valuable investments. They can buy U.S. competitors to take advantage of American resources and infrastructure, yet maintain their headquarters abroad. As a recent Wall Street Journal article reported, foreign businesses use their additional cash after paying taxes to outbid their U.S. counterparts trying to buy U.S.-based businesses. The article specifically cites a situation in which Emerson, a manufacturing and technology company based in St. Louis, attempted to acquire American Power Conversion (APC) in Rhode Island. Despite an offer of over $5 billion, France-based Schneider Electric outbid Emerson by about $1 billion, turning once-American APC into a French company.
Without true tax code reforms, Congress will continue to see erosion of its tax base. Congress’s misguided attempts to stop inversions could actually expedite the erosion by preventing new companies from incorporating in the U.S. President Obama has threatened unilateral action to stop inversions, but only comprehensive tax reform will rectify the problem that Congress has created with the complicated tax code.0 Comments | Post a Comment | Sign up for NTU Action Alerts
In honor of the economist Milton Friedman’s birthday, NTU Foundation once again opened up the polls to taxpayers across the country to see which fundamental tax system change they support. As many Americans know, Friedman was a supporter of tax reform in favor of broadening the base and increasing bureaucratic efficiency. This poll has become a tradition for Americans as NTU and Foundation continue to research the different revenue collecting proposals in Congress and state capitols. Taxpayers were given several different options to choose from:
What did taxpayers vote for this year? Over 170 people voted in our poll with half voicing their support for the FairTax. The Flat Tax came in second at 39 percent. Demand for a National Transaction Tax, Keeping the Current System, and a VAT fell into the single digits, similar to last year.
Thanks for everyone who voted in our poll this year! We will be doing more of these as Congress continues to propose alternatives and marginal changes to our current tax system.
Have a thought or question on the FairTax or any of the other options? Leave a comment below and our NTUF experts will get back to you!
* Email me if you want to see Rep. Wise's BillTally report from the 102nd Congress. NTUF has back to the 107th Congress online.0 Comments | Post a Comment | Sign up for NTU Action Alerts