Daily Tax Update - June 10, 2005

Yesterday, Ranking Finance Committee member Max Baucus (D-MT) suggested that the House and Senate highway conferees agree to an amount of $290 billion. Baucus said, "The House is at $284 billion in funding and the Senate is at $295 billion.  We know where we are going to be at the end of the day:  in the middle.  We are going to split the difference -- $290 billion.  Why wait to make that decision?  I am asking my colleagues to put differences aside, work together, and get this bill done."

  • Finance Committee Chairman Charles Grassley (R-IA) concurred that a compromise was necessary in order to complete the conference. Grassley said, "At the end of the day, of course we all know that each side needs some compromise. I believe strongly in some of these provisions -- particularly those related to fuel fraud compliance. These provisions do create new tax revenue for the trust fund."
  • However, House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-TX) appeared less agreeable to a compromise. DeLay said, "It's not as simple as some have said."
  • The conferees will continue their deliberations next week.


  • H.R. 2830 sponsored by Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) would reform the pension funding rules.
  • H.R 2831 sponsored by Rep. John Boehner (R-OH) would make improvements in benefit accrual standards.
  • H.R. 2835 sponsored by Rep. George Miller (D-CA) would improve recruitment, preparation, distribution, and retention of public elementary and secondary school teachers and principals.
  • S. 1213 sponsored by Sen. Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) would allow a refundable credit against income tax for the purchase of a principal residence by a first-time homebuyer.
  • S. 1218 sponsored by Sen. Edward Kennedy (D-MA) would improve recruitment, preparation, distribution, and retention of public elementary and secondary school teachers and principals.
  • S. 1266 sponsored by Sen. Ted Stevens (R-AK) would reinstate the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund tax and maintain a balance of $3 billion in the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund.

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