Topic: About TaxVox

Don’t Count the Feds Out Yet

By :: December 9th, 2014

In a provocative Washington Post column, Brookings Institution scholar Bruce Katz argues that the federal government is becoming irrelevant — especially to cities and regions where most Americans live and most economic activity takes place. While Bruce rightly identifies some areas where the feds are fading, he overstates the phenomenon. The federal government remains the […]

Read More

How To End the Tax Extender Drama: Stop Calling Them Extenders—And Make Congress Pay For Them

By :: December 2nd, 2014

There are two simple ways to end the tiresome seasonal drama over faux-temporary tax cuts known (with a stunning lack of accuracy) as the extenders. First, call them what they are: Expired tax breaks that have been off the books for nearly a year. Second, make Congress pay for any of the special interest subsidies […]

Read More

The Politics and Policy of Tax Extenders

By :: December 1st, 2014

‘Tis the season for bad tax policy… In what has become an annual ritual, Congress is struggling with what to do with the 70 or so “temporary” tax provisions that expired in 2013 or will expire in 2014. For a brief moment last week, there was word of a deal to make permanent the biggest […]

Read More

Tax Deals: Will Everything Old Be New Again?

By :: December 1st, 2014

Dave Camp on tax reform: “It can be done.” Retiring House Ways & Means Chair Dave Camp remains optimistic. The Hill reports that a deal to extend expiring tax breaks could give Camp’s successor, Paul Ryan, a chance to secure broad GOP support for a tax reform plan. About that tax extender deal… The White […]

Read More

Get the Fiscal House in Order

By :: November 20th, 2014

The Cato Institute has organized an online forum to debate pro-growth economic policy reforms. Tax Policy Center scholars Bill Gale, Donald Marron, and Eric Toder have each contributed to the discussion. As policy makers search for ways to raise economic growth and improve the living standards of future generations, a major priority should be to get […]

Read More

It’s Not Easy to Escape the Local Pension Vise

By :: October 6th, 2014

Last week’s federal court ruling in the municipal bankruptcy case of Stockton, CA highlighted the enormous challenge faced by local governments with underfunded public pensions. There are ways out of this vise, but none are easy, and all are fraught with risks. State governments face at least a $1 trillion gap between pensions promised to […]

Read More

Does Income Inequality Really Hurt State Tax Revenues?

By :: September 19th, 2014

This week the rating agency Standard and Poor’s got a lot of attention for a study that concluded that rising income inequality is damaging state tax revenues. Well, state tax revenue growth has slowed in recent decades and income inequality has grown. But the story is far more complicated than S&P suggests. Worse, I fear […]

Read More

The “Helping Working Families Afford Child Care Act” Would Help, but Doesn’t Solve the Timing Mismatch

By :: July 28th, 2014

The Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit (CDCTC) does not work for low-income families. It fails on three counts – the credit is nonrefundable, covers only a portion of expenses, and comes long after expenses have been incurred. Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Patty Murray (D-WA), and Kristin Gillibrand (D-NY) have proposed the […]

Read More

Misguided Expansion of the Child Tax Credit

By :: June 30th, 2014

Congresswoman Lynn Jenkins (R-KN) wants to expand the child tax credit (CTC) with the Child Tax Credit Improvement Act of 2014. She’s on the right track, but her proposed expansions are ill-targeted and fail to address the credit’s biggest looming issue: the change in refundability that will hit the poorest recipients after 2017. Jenkins’s plan […]

Read More

A Flash Tax for the Flash Boys

By :: April 18th, 2014

Michael Lewis spotlights high-frequency traders with his new book, Flash Boys.  These traders use high-speed computers and fast connections to outrace investors, and other traders, to the market.  They now account for more than half of all U.S. stock trades.  And the flash boys spend billions to save milliseconds (by, for example, laying expensive fiber-optic […]

Read More