Daily Tax Update - January 31, 2011: White House Launches "Startup America" Initiative

WHITE HOUSE LAUNCHES "STARTUP AMERICA" INITIATIVE:  Today, President Obama said that the Administration will begin a national campaign (Startup America) designed "to focus on innovation, and how we can create the jobs and industries of the future by investing in the creativity and imagination of the American people."  The program will promote "high-growth entrepreneurship across the country with new initiatives to help encourage private sector investment in job-creating startups and small firms, accelerate research, and address barriers to success for entrepreneurs and small businesses."

  • President Obama said, “Entrepreneurs embody the promise of America: the belief that if you have a good idea and are willing to work hard and see it through, you can succeed in this country.  And in fulfilling this promise, entrepreneurs also play a critical role in expanding our economy and creating jobs.  That’s why we're launching Startup America, a national campaign to help win the future by knocking down barriers in the path of men and women in every corner of this country hoping to take a chance, follow a dream, and start a business.”
  • As part of the initiative, the President’s new budget will propose making permanent the elimination of capital gains taxes on key investments in small businesses, which was passed as a temporary provision in 2010 as part of the Small Business Jobs Act the President signed in September.  The budget will also propose expanding the New Markets Tax Credit to encourage private sector investment in startups and small businesses operating in lower-income communities
  • Additional information can be accessed here.

IRS OFFERS FREE TAX ASSISTANCE:  The IRS said that over 12,000 free tax preparation sites will be open this year to provide tax preparation services for low- to moderate-income and elderly taxpayers.  The IRS said, "The IRS Volunteer Income Tax Assistance (VITA) Program offers free tax help to people who earn less than $49,000.  The Tax Counseling for the Elderly (TCE) Program offers free tax help to taxpayers who are 60 and older."  

  • The IRS added, "In addition to free tax return preparation assistance, most sites use free electronic filing.  An e-filed tax return means a fast refund.  Taxpayers who combine e-file and direct deposit can generally get their refunds in as few as 10 days."  The IRS also said that taxpayers can seek free assistance at the 400 IRS Taxpayer Assistance Centers nationwide on Saturday, February 5.
  • Additional information can be accessed here.

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