Daily Tax Update - June 17, 2005

TAX REFORM PANEL EXTENDS DEADLINE UNTIL SEPTEMBER 30:
Yesterday, President Bush extended the deadline for the release of recommendations by the tax reform commission to September 30. The Commission had been scheduled to complete the report by July 31. The President said the delay was due to a busy legislative slate of issues currently under consideration by Congress.

  • A Treasury spokesperson said, "There are a lot of congressional and presidential priorities on the plate right now, Social Security, [the Central American Free Trade Agreement], energy, the Patriot Act, judicial nominees, and we're heading very quickly into the July 4 recess and the August recess after that. We wanted to make sure this has the attention it deserves" when it is released.

TAX BILLS INTRODUCED JUNE 16:

  • H.R. 2935 sponsored by Rep. Susan David (CA) would allow individuals a deduction for qualified long-term care insurance premiums, use of such insurance under cafeteria plans and flexible spending arrangements, and a credit for individuals with long-term care needs.
  • H.R. 2936 sponsored by Rep. Susan Davis (CA) would require that group and individual health insurance coverage and group health plans cover second opinions.
  • H.R. 2937 sponsored by Rep. Susan Davis (CA) would permit enrollees direct access to services of obstetrical and gynecological physician services directly and without a referral.
  • H.R. 2940 sponsored by Rep. Phil English (PA) would clarify that certain settlement funds established under the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act of 1980 ("CERCLA") are beneficially owned by the United States and are not subject to tax.
  • H.R. 2941 sponsored by Rep. Phil English (PA) would modify the qualified small issue bond provisions.
  • H.R. 2950 sponsored by Rep. Richard Neal (MA) would provide a revenue-neutral simplification of the individual income tax.
  • H.R. 2951 sponsored by Rep. Earl Pomeroy (ND) would encourage guaranteed lifetime income payments by excluding from income a portion of such payments.
  • H.R. 2952 sponsored by Rep. Paul Ryan (WI) would amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 with respect to the eligibility of veterans for mortgage bond financing.
  • S. 1255 sponsored by Sen. George Voinovich (OH) would exclude from gross income amounts paid on behalf of Federal employees and members of the Armed Forces on active duty under Federal student loan repayment programs.

INTERNAL REVENUE SERVICE - CIRCULAR 230 DISCLOSURE:
As provided for in Treasury regulations, advice (if any) relating to federal taxes that is contained in this communication (including attachments) is not intended or written to be used, and cannot be used, for the purpose of (1) avoiding penalties under the Internal Revenue Code or (2) promoting, marketing or recommending to another party any plan or arrangement addressed herein.

STEPTOE & JOHNSON LLP - TAX PRACTICE
Steptoe & Johnson LLP has one of the largest and most diverse law firm tax practices in the country. The practice covers the entire spectrum of federal taxation, including representation of businesses before the Congress, Treasury and the national office of the IRS; transactional planning for domestic and multinational corporations; complex audit and controversy work for corporations and other business interests contesting IRS adjustments; litigation before the Tax Court, Court of Federal Claims, district courts, courts of appeals and the Supreme Court. The firm's tax practice also encompasses all aspects of employee benefits (ERISA), executive compensation, tax-exempt organizations and charitable giving.  Steptoe has an extensive state and local tax practice, representing an array of business clients on complex sales and use tax, corporate income tax and property tax matters, both advising those clients and handling audits, administrative appeals, and litigation for them.  Read  more information on Steptoe's tax practice