Daily Tax Update - June 27, 2005

HIGHWAY CONFEREES SET TO CONTINUE NEGOTIATIONS TOMORROW:
House and Senate highway reauthorization bill conferees will continue to negotiate the transportation reauthorization package tomorrow. On June 24, sources confirmed that an agreement had been reached that the transportation bill (H.R. 3) would cost $286.5 billion in total funding. However, there are several smaller spending issues that must be resolved before the latest extension of the highway funding expires on June 30.

SENATORS WRITE LETTER TO PROTEST CLOSURE OF TAXPAYER ASSISTANCE CENTERS:
On June 24, 25 senators, including Senate Finance Committee ranking member Max Baucus (D-MT) and five Republicans, sent a letter to the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Treasury, the Judiciary, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies to protest the closure of 68 IRS Taxpayer Assistance Centers.

  • The letter accused the IRS of "retreating back into its old ways" and failing to fulfill the mandate in the IRS Restructuring and Reform Act of 1998 "to place a greater emphasis on serving the public and meeting taxpayers’ needs."

TAX BILL INTRODUCED JUNE 24:

  • H.R. 3061 sponsored by Rep. Chris Chocola (R-IN) would repeal the dollar limitation on contributions to funeral trusts.

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