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Posts by Samantha Jacoby

This Year’s Tax Day Highlights Need to Rebuild IRS

July 14, 2020

This Tax Day, delayed until July 15 to help taxpayers deal with the disruptions caused by COVID-19, should be a wake-up call for policymakers to invest in core government functions like the IRS. A decade of ill-advised funding cuts have constrained not just the IRS’ core function of enforcing taxpayer obligations, but also its capacity to deliver stimulus payments to struggling families during...

Distressed parent at kitchen table with child and pile of bills

Policymakers Should Reject Calls to Make Business Tax Credits Refundable

June 29, 2020

Some policymakers are considering whether to make certain business tax credits temporarily refundable — that is, available to firms that don’t have enough taxable income to otherwise qualify — saying that would give cash to struggling small...

Research Credits Mainly Benefit Large Corporations

IRS Deadlines Threaten Stimulus Payments for 1 Million Dependents

April 21, 2020

Roughly 1 million children may miss out this year on the $500 stimulus payment their parents or guardians are supposed to receive if the parents or guardians don’t complete an online IRS form under an unreasonable deadline, with 600,000 of these children at risk if the form is not filed by noon tomorrow, April 22. This deadline is unreasonable and unnecessary.

The Treasury Department...

Dollar Bill

GAO: 2017 Tax Law Creating New Compliance Challenges for IRS

March 11, 2020

The already overburdened IRS “may face challenges ensuring compliance” with certain parts of the 2017 tax law, a Government Accountability Office (GAO) report finds, particularly the 20 percent deduction for certain “pass-through” business income. That’s one more reason why policymakers should boost funding for IRS enforcement and...

Form 1040 And Refund Check

Final Opportunity Zone Rules Could Raise Tax Break’s Cost

February 3, 2020

In finalizing its regulations on the 2017 tax law’s “opportunity zones,” the Treasury Department took some questionable business giveaways that were included in its proposed regulations and actually expanded them.

The Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) has nearly doubled its estimate of the zones’ cost in lost federal revenue, and the new regulations could raise those costs even more....

Projections of Lost Revenue From Opportunity Zones Have Nearly Doubled

Policymakers Should Ensure Pass-Throughs Pay More of Taxes They Owe

November 22, 2019

High-income taxpayers drive much of the “tax gap” — the gap between what taxpayers owe and what they voluntarily pay on time — finds a new paper from Professor Natasha Sarin and former Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers, citing new...

Pass-Throughs Make Up Largest Portion of Tax Gap

Bills Aim to Curb Opportunity Zone Abuses

November 18, 2019

Companion bills from Senate Finance Committee Ranking Member Ron Wyden and House Majority Whip James Clyburn would impose significant, and welcome, new guardrails on investments in “opportunity zones,” or low-income areas designated for special tax breaks.

Created by the 2017 tax law, the opportunity zone (OZ) provision lets investors defer taxes on capital gains (profits from the sale...

Pile of $100 bills

Taxing High Incomes, Large Fortunes More Effectively

November 13, 2019

Policymakers who seek to raise more revenue from the nation’s wealthiest individuals could, for instance, strengthen the estate tax, raise the top personal income tax rate, end preferential treatment of capital gains and dividends, or impose new taxes on very wealthy households, our...

1040 Form

Opportunity Zones Exemplify 2017 Tax Law’s Fundamental Flaws

October 31, 2019

Update, November 1: we’ve updated this post.

The New York Times and ProPublica have highlighted major flaws in the 2017 tax law’s “opportunity zone” tax...

Form 1040 And Refund Check

High Cost of IRS Cuts: Weakened Tax Enforcement

October 7, 2019

The IRS didn’t collect billions of unpaid employment taxes due to inadequate funding for a key compliance program, a new report by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration (TIGTA) finds. It shows that deep IRS funding cuts over the last decade have weakened the agency’s ability to perform its...

In Focus: Funding for IRS Enforcement and Operations Support Has Eroded

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