Agenda Set to Move Tax Reform Forward

Date: September 15, 2017

House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady presented an outline this week to reach a consensus on tax reform legislation, pass a budget, and present a tax bill to Congress.

House Ways and Means Chairman Kevin Brady this week announced a timeline to push legislation overhauling the tax system through Congress within the coming months. After exhaustive deliberations with key officials, Brady intends to deliver a tax reform framework on the week of September 25, according to Politico.

Following the September 25 release of more tax details, Brady said in a meeting that the next focus would be passing a fiscal year 2018 budget by mid-October. Legislators are aiming to side step any opposition to the tax proposal by using the “reconciliation” process to move reform through Congress, but this requires approving a budget resolution first, according to The Hill. Once the budget is managed, Brady said that the House Ways and Means Committee would examine and negotiate the tax bill in committee and then consider it on the House floor.


House Speaker Paul Ryan called the tax reform details to be made public around September 25, “the beginning of the process… to achieve for the first time in a generation, overhauling our tax system and giving middle-class families a much-deserved break.”

For months, the “Big Six” tax policymakers have been negotiating an overhaul to the tax code and cuts to business and individual tax rates in order to reach a consensus. Few details have emerged on any agreements from the negotiators.

President Trump has also been meeting with legislators this week to garner bipartisan support for tax reform. Trump met with a bipartisan group of senators on Tuesday evening and with bipartisan members of the House on Wednesday to discuss tax concerns, according to Fox Business.

“The whole point of all of this is the House, the Senate and the White House are starting from the same page and the same outline and tax writers are going to take it from there,” said Ryan.

The complicated tax code and high tax rates are still at the top of small business concerns, according to NFIB’s latest Small Business Optimism Index, and owners want reform that allows them to grow their business. 

Small businesses represent 99.9 percent of all U.S. businesses, and they employ nearly half the American workforce. “If the point of tax reform is to boost the economy, it must start with small business,” wrote NFIB President and CEO Juanita Duggan in an editorial for The Wall Street Journal this week. “What gets lost in the conversation is that three-quarters of American small businesses pay taxes as individuals. Their top federal rate is 43.3 percent, which is substantially higher than the current top rate for large multinational firms. When state burdens are added, small businesses are sending close to half their income to the tax man.”


White House Push for Tax Reform Picks Up Speed

Tax Reform Starts with Small Business

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