Daily Tax Update - February 11, 2015: Senate Finance Committee Passes Tax Bills

Senate Finance Committee Passes Tax Bills:  Today, the Senate Finance Committee marked up and passed a number of tax bills.  Some bills of interest are:

  • Two bills to modify rules with respect to real estate investment trusts (REITs), regulated investment companies (RICs), and the Foreign Investment in Real Property Tax Act (FIRPTA)
  • A bill to modify the alternative tax for certain small insurance companies
  • A bill to exclude from gross income certain clean coal power grants
  • A bill to provide a 10% investment credit for qualified waste-heat-to-power property
  • A bill to convert the tax on liquefied natural gas and liquefied petroleum gas to an energy equivalent basis
  • An amendment to a bill to remove alcohol bonding requirements for certain taxpayers 
  • A bill to provide special treatment for certain agricultural research organizations, similar to the present-law treatment for medical research organizations
  • A bill that would create an exception to the private foundation excess business holdings rules for philanthropic business holdings
  • A bill to require that the IRS notify an exempt organization prior to revoking its exemption for failure to file annual information returns
  • A bill that clarifies a rule with respect to reimbursements under an employer-provided accident or health plan for medical care

Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) stated that he and Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D-OR) plan to hold other markups in the near future.  He described the criteria for bills to be considered: “First, we said that the bills had to fall squarely within the jurisdiction of the Finance Committee.   Second, the bills had to have bipartisan support and be non-controversial to both sides.  Third, they had to have little or no budgetary impact and any bill scored as losing revenue had to have an acceptable offset.  Fourth, the bills had to address thoroughly-reviewed subject matter.  Fifth, they could not be actively opposed by either the Senate leadership or the White House.  And, finally, they could not be considered a limited tax benefit under Senate Rule 44.”

OECD Releases Comments on Interest Deduction Limitations:  The OECD released public comments it received on its December 2014 proposal to limit multinational enterprise (MNE) interest deductions using a group-wide test.  It released the comments in two parts: Part I and Part II.  The OECD will hold a hearing on this topic on February 17 in Paris.

Research Credit Bill to be Marked-Up:  On February 12, the House Committee on Ways and Means will mark up bills to simplify and make permanent the research credit and the deduction of State and local general sales taxes as well as one to make modifications to Section 529 plans.