Senate Finance Approves Tax Extenders

Wyden plans spring hearing on tax reform; Tuesday hearing to focus on how to protect taxpayers from incompetent and fraudulent preparers

Senate Finance Chairman Ron Wyden, D-Ore. (Photo: AP) Senate Finance Chairman Ron Wyden, D-Ore. (Photo: AP)

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The Senate Finance Committee approved by a bipartisan voice vote Thursday a bill to renew a set of tax extenders worth $85 billion that have expired or will expire at year-end.

The Expiring Provisions Improvement Reform and Efficiency (EXPIRE) Act, renews more than 50 extenders for two years, and includes the acceptance of a wind-energy production tax credit that originally was omitted from the bill.

Among others renewed were section 179 expensing, bonus depreciation, the research and development tax credit and the deduction for mortgage insurance premiums.

“When I joined the Finance committee nearly a decade ago, I couldn’t possibly have imagined chairing Congress’ fifteenth time renewing the stop-and-go tax cuts called ‘extenders,’” Wyden said during his opening remarks at the markup.

“Many of these extenders are well-intentioned and ought to be permanent. Their stop-and-go nature obviously contributes to the lack of certainty and predictability America needs to create more family-wage jobs. It doesn’t have to be this way.”

Wyden added that he wanted to be “straightforward on one point — this will be the last tax extenders bill the committee takes up as long as I’m chairman. That’s why the bill is called the EXPIRE Act. It is meant to expire.”

This spring, Wyden said that he would start holding hearings on “fixing the broken tax code” and “building a new system that works in today’s global, digital economy.”

On Tuesday, Wyden said the Senate Finance Committee would hold a hearing on how to protect taxpayers from incompetent and fraudulent preparers.

Other issues for the committee to examine include identity theft and taxpayer rights as well as issues surrounding multi-employer pension plans “in order to protect Americans’ benefits,” he said.

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Senate Finance’s Wyden Set to Move on Tax Extenders

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