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The return of high inflation after 40 years should cause policymakers to rethink their approach, get back to basics, and focus on economic growth and opportunity. Tax reform should be a key pillar in this approach. The third session of Tax Foundation University 2022 will provide a demo of the Tax Foundation’s Taxes and Growth (TAG) Model and an overview of Tax Foundation’s 10 Tax Reforms for Growth and Opportunity. We will discuss how charting a path of increased economic opportunity, innovation and dynamism, growing industries, and greater financial security can be facilitated by better tax policy.
The second session of Tax Foundation University 2022 will cover key parts of the individual tax code, explaining why it contains elements of income and consumption taxes and how it applies to a growing share of businesses, colloquially known as “pass-throughs.” Our experts will discuss the temporary expansion of work and child-related provisions and its impact on growth. Finally, you will learn about ideas proposed as part of the Build Back Better agenda, including a high-income surcharge, mark-to-market tax, and pass-through business tax increases.
The first of our three Tax Foundation University 2022 sessions will explain key parts of the corporate and international tax code, the current tax landscape, implications of scheduled and potential changes, and the latest research on who bears the burden of corporate income taxes.We will discuss key concepts proposed as part of the Build Back Better agenda, such as profit shifting, differences between taxable and book income, and the tax treatment of other types of financial income. To finish, we will offer a lay of the land for international tax provisions and how the OECD tax deal could play a significant role in U.S. tax policy.
Inflation has made an unwelcome comeback, with consumer prices rising at rates not seen since 1982. Where did this inflation come from and what might its impacts be? What does inflation have to do with tax and fiscal policy and how could each be used to mitigate its negative effects?The Tax Foundation recently hosted a panel discussion with experts from the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget and The Hoover Institution to discuss these questions and more, including the impact of enacted and proposed federal legislation on inflation, debt, and tax policy and how all three interact.
Change is here: The pandemic sparked a move toward a more mobile economy for workers and businesses across the country. Where you live no longer has to dictate where you work—and that mobile economy is here to stay.  States are unprepared: Our economy is changing, but state tax codes have failed to keep up. In some states, moreover, existing tax provisions exacerbate the impact of high inflation and contribute to the supply chain crisis. A road map forward: On our latest Talking Tax webinar, our state experts overviewed the landscape and explained how states can remove impediments to new living and working arrangements, enhance their attractiveness for increasingly mobile employers and employees, and respond to greater economic uncertainty and rising inflation.
The way we work is changing, and tax codes have not caught up. The coronavirus pandemic has dramatically accelerated a trend toward remote, flexible, and multistate work arrangements, but existing tax codes often penalize employers and employees alike as companies provide workers with greater flexibility.Not only will many workers face filing requirements in multiple states, but in some cases, so-called “convenience rules” will obligate them to pay taxes on the same income to two states, with no offsetting credits. Even working remotely for a single day in some states is enough to trigger filing obligations. Hybrid work arrangements, moreover, will yield far more employees working in an office in one state some days, and from home in a different state for others. For businesses, an employee’s decision to work remotely from another state can establish tax nexus that did not exist previously and can sometimes result in the company’s income from services being taxed in two states.As Americans settle into a much more workplace-flexible new normal, many taxpayers—employers and employees alike—continue to grapple with the tax implications. Our panel of tax experts is here to explain the issues facing businesses and workers, discussing key questions such as:What can cause a worker to trigger business tax liability where the business previously lacked nexus?Under what circumstances can remote workers lead to double taxation of business income?How should a business withhold for employees that live and work in a different state than its offices?In the absence of federal legislation, would workers need to file an income tax return in every state they worked in, even if only for a day?What reforms could state tax codes incorporate to prepare for an increasingly remote workforce to attract mobile workers but also address revenue needs?Learn more at: https://taxfoundation.org/events/talking-tax-reform-mobile-workforce-nexus-telework/
Throughout the year, the Biden administration and congressional Democrats have been fleshing out tax proposals as the budget reconciliation process heats up. With these expanded details, the Tax Foundation and other scorekeepers have released updated and more precise analysis.To explain these proposals and help policymakers and taxpayers understand their impact on American businesses and families, we recently hosted a webinar doubleheader (this being the first of two).Our first webinar discussion focused on individual and pass-through business tax plans, which include:-- Raising the top marginal rate from 37 percent to 39.6 percent-- Taxing long-term capital gains as ordinary income for taxpayers with adjusted gross income above $1 million-- Taxing unrealized capital gains at death for unrealized gains above $1 million-- Phasing out the pass-through deduction for taxpayers earning over $400k and expanding eligibility for certain taxpayers under that amount-- Applying an additional 3.8 percent tax to active business income for taxpayers earning over $400k-- And more.Hear from today’s leading tax policy experts on the details and implications of potential individual and pass-through business tax changes, moderated by Tax Foundation Vice President of Federal Projects Will McBride:-- Robert McClelland, Senior Fellow, Tax Policy Center-- Garrett Watson, Senior Policy Analyst, Tax FoundationLearn more at: https://taxfoundation.org/events/biden-individual-tax-plan-webinar
Throughout the year, the Biden administration and congressional Democrats have been fleshing out tax proposals as the budget reconciliation process heats up. With these expanded details, the Tax Foundation and other scorekeepers have released updated and more precise analysis.To explain these proposals and help policymakers and taxpayers understand their impact on American businesses and families, we recently hosted a webinar doubleheader (this being the second of two).Our second webinar discussion focused on the corporate tax plans proposed by the Biden administration and Congress and their impacts on business decisions and families across the country. Our panel explored key questions such as:-- Who bears the economic incidence of corporate tax increases and what would the impact be on after-tax incomes, wages, and jobs across states and congressional districts?-- How do corporate tax changes impact companies’ decisions on where to invest and employ workers?-- What could be the economic impact of investment incentives, such as expensing and R&D tax provisions, currently being considered in Congress?-- How would a tax on businesses’ financial profits work and what economic and administrative challenges could arise?-- How would industry-specific tax policy reforms impact economic growth, employment, and wage growth?Hear from today’s leading tax policy experts on the details and implications of potential corporate tax changes, moderated by Tax Foundation Vice President of Federal Projects Will McBride.-- Doug Holtz-Eakin, President, American Action Forum-- Erica York, Economist, Tax FoundationLearn more at: https://taxfoundation.org/events/biden-corporate-tax-plan-webinar
It’s likely that new markets like recreational marijuana and sports betting will continue to grow as legalization and innovation continue, but the structure of excise taxes could dictate where and how that growth occurs.This has raised important questions as policymakers debate how best to enact or fix excise taxes:How should excise taxes be structured so as not to stifle growing industries or push participants into the black market?How much will these new taxes raise, how stable will collections be, and are there better or worse ways for governments to allocate the revenue?To what extent are different excise taxes effective tools for curbing unwanted behavior?What lessons should the federal government take from the policy experiments in the states?For our latest Talking Tax webinar, our excise tax expert Ulrik Boesen moderates an exclusive panel discussion featuring:Norman Birenbaum, Director, Cannabis Programs at the State of New York and President, Cannabis Regulators AssociationRichard Auxier, Senior Policy Associate, Tax Policy CenterTodd Nesbit, Assistant Professor of Economics, Ball State University
Even a typical filing season brings up many questions for taxpayers, such as, “How big will my tax refund be?” or, “Will I have a balance due when I file taxes this year?” But the 2021 filing season will be far from typical—in addition to normal compliance challenges, taxpayers will also be affected by many of the provisions in the various COVID-19 relief legislative packages, including three rounds of direct payments, a new exclusion of $10,200 of unemployment income, and a significant, but temporary, increase to the Child Tax Credit (CTC) and Earned Income Tax Credit.These new policies introduce several new wrinkles. Typically, taxpayers would owe taxes on their unemployment checks but a provision in the American Rescue Plan drastically changes what those individuals and families owe. Taxpayers will not owe taxes on their direct payment, but each round of checks has its own unique structure and amount. Also, important questions exist around the advance monthly payment of the CTC.These changes, and others, have raised additional questions in the minds of many taxpayers and could potentially affect their refund and liability in the 2021 filing season. It should also raise important questions for policymakers. Is the tax code too complex? Is it the best vehicle to deliver direct aid? How can the code be streamlined to reduce compliance burdens for taxpayers and administrative costs for the IRS?These questions are answered by our all-star lineup of tax experts, hosted by Tax Foundation president Scott Hodge:— Kathy Pickering, Chief Tax Officer, H&R Block— Nina Olson, Executive Director and Founder, Center for Taxpayer Rights— Erica York, Economist, Tax Foundation
The fifth and final session of Tax Foundation University will be dedicated to audience feedback and questions from the first four weeks.Topics could include upcoming and recent legislation related to COVID-19 recovery or energy policy, Tax Foundation’s Options Guide, or other concepts that attendees express interest in throughout the prior month.Areas of Focus:1. COVID-19-Related Tax Relief2. Energy Tax Policy3. Onshoring and Supply Chain Incentives4. Workforce Training IncentivesSee more educational sessions and explore related resources at: https://taxfoundation.org/university
In the fourth session, we will feature the second edition of our popular guide, Options for Reforming America’s Tax Code, which analyzes more than 70 discreet tax policy changes, encompassing both the individual and business tax codes.The Options Guide will be used as a teaching tool to discuss the unique trade-offs among revenue, economic growth, and the distribution of the tax burden inherent in all tax policy changes.Using the Options Guide, this session will review tax policy issues facing the 117th Congress and long-term tax policy considerations and discuss the range of options available to policymakers.Learn more: https://taxfoundation.org/university
In the third session, we will explore how corporations pay taxes through the corporate income and international tax code, the impacts of the current system, and changes that some policymakers have suggested.The 2017 tax law reduced the corporate income tax rate, changed the corporate tax base, and reformed the way foreign profits of U.S. multinationals are taxed. Many major business-related provisions of the 2017 tax law are scheduled to change in the coming years, and the Biden administration has proposed increasing the corporate income tax rate, changing international taxes, and instituting a corporate alternative minimum tax.This session will provide an overview of the corporate and international tax landscape and discuss the implications of scheduled and potential changes. 
In the second session, we will cover the key parts of the individual tax code that contain elements of income taxes and consumption taxes, and apply to a growing share of businesses, colloquially known as “pass throughs.”Our experts will also discuss work and child-related tax benefits, which have led to a growing share of households that receive net benefits through the individual income tax, and several individual income tax elements that are scheduled to expire in the coming years.Finally, you will learn about progressivity in our current income tax system and some of the proposals the Biden administration has put forward to change the way income is taxed.Learn more: https://taxfoundation.org/university
In the first of five sessions, we’ll explain how to view the economy, the role that taxes play in the economy, and the various measures economists use to talk about the impact of taxes, including growth, wages, and employment.Our experts will explain how the various tax cuts have different impacts on the U.S. economy and how specific tax changes grow or shrink GDP by changing incentives to work and invest.This session will also introduce you to the Tax Foundation’s General Equilibrium Model, used to estimate the economic, revenue, and distributional effects of tax policy changes, as well as the other major tax models in use today.Learn more at: https://taxfoundation.org/university
State revenues have not taken as much of a hit as was once feared, but state lawmakers still face the difficult task of balancing responses to reduced revenues with efforts to help facilitate the economic recovery.In this final session, we will review the latest revenue data, survey state responses to the Great Recession and prior economic downturns, explore the state tax implications of federal relief packages, and outline states’ options.Drawing upon earlier discussions, we will close out the legislative boot camp with a timely discussion of tax policy choices, on issues ranging from UI tax adjustments to tax conformity measures to the advantages and disadvantages of different revenue-raising options.Learn more at: https://taxfoundation.org/boot-camp
Recent years have seen expanded interest in new or less common forms of taxation—things like wealth taxes, digital advertising taxes, excess compensation taxes, and financial transaction taxes.States have little or no experience with these taxes, leaving basic questions about the proper structure of such taxes unresolved and creating significant uncertainty around fundamental issues such as their revenue potential, impact on tax competitiveness, and even, in some cases, constitutionality.In this session, we will dive into several of these notable additions to the tax debate, outlining the arguments made for and against each tax, exploring some of the design and implementation challenges policymakers have encountered or are likely to encounter, and surveying the legal hurdles such tax proposals would have to clear.Areas of Focus:Wealth taxes and the mark-to-market taxation of capital gains incomeFinancial transaction and stock transfer taxesDigital advertising and data taxes, contrasted with sales taxation of digital goods and servicesExcess compensation taxes, business head taxes, and other new developments in state taxationLearn more at: https://taxfoundation.org/boot-camp
With revenues short of pre-pandemic projections, many states are looking to excise taxes as a way to plug revenue gaps, sometimes by raising existing tax rates (particularly on tobacco and vapor products) and other times by legalizing and taxing new markets, like sports betting and marijuana.States often struggle with the trade-offs inherent in these so-called “sin taxes,” trying to navigate sometimes competing public health and revenue generation goals. They must also grapple with often unstable revenues and questions of how to design taxes on newly legalized markets.In this session, we explore these and similar questions related to excise taxes, along with a review of the basic theory of excise taxation.Learn more at: https://taxfoundation.org/boot-camp
The pandemic has changed how we live and work, and for many, some of those changes may be permanent. But what are the tax implications of remote work?In this session, we will delve into the tax implications of multistate living or working arrangements. We’ll look at what this means for tax withholding, where an individual might have liability, how credits for work performed in another state function, and what scenarios can yield actual double taxation. We will also examine the business side, identifying scenarios in which remote workers could trigger business tax liability in a state where a company previously lacked nexus.Remote work is here to stay, but state tax codes aren’t ready for it. This session is about how states can remove impediments to remote work, what they can expect from a dramatically more mobile workforce—and how to respond to it.Learn more at: https://taxfoundation.org/boot-camp
In the second part of our overview of major state and local taxes, we tackle sales and excise taxes, property taxes, severance taxes, and other forms of state and local tax revenue.In this session, we discuss states’ different approaches to defining the sales tax base, and where there is room for reform. We also explore local sales tax authority, how services are sourced for tax purposes, and how states have responded to the Wayfair court decision on the taxation of remote sales. We discuss the design of marketplace facilitator laws, which require sales platforms to remit on behalf of their sellers, and look at some of the complexities that have arisen under these laws.We also tackle property taxes, both real (land) and personal (machinery and equipment, etc.), talking about assessments, split roll taxation, and other structural issues. We explore the merits and demerits of different state approaches to mitigating property tax burdens, either through property tax limitations or through tax swaps. And we discuss the different approaches to severance taxes, and the basic theory of excise taxation, all in an informative one-hour session.Learn more at: https://taxfoundation.org/boot-camp
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