Archive for the ‘Individual Income Taxes’ Category

Dave Camp’s Tax Plan: A Brave Start But Lots of Gimmicks

Give House Ways & Means Committee Chair Dave Camp (R-MI) all the credit in the world for years of hard work developing his tax reform plan. Just don’t look too hard at the blueprint, which he released this afternoon. On one level, it is a serious framework for reform. For individuals, it would consolidate and […]

Individual Income Taxes May Soon Generate Half of All Federal Tax Revenue

Over the next decade, the individual income tax will be the fastest growing source of federal revenue, according to new estimates by the Congressional Budget Office. In fact, the individual income tax will pretty much be the only revenue source likely to increase significantly over the next decade.  As a result, it will generate more […]

Tax Policy is MIA in the State of the Union

When it comes to tax policy, President Obama’s State of the Union address last night was a model of modesty. There was little new. And, while it is always hard to tell what really matters in a speech that included more than 40 separate initiatives, the president showed little enthusiasm for broad-based tax reform. With […]

Utah Lets Same-Sex Couples File Joint Tax Returns

The Utah State Tax Commission yesterday reversed Governor Gary Herbert (R), ruling that same-sex couples may file their 2013 state tax returns as married, as long as they wed before the end of last year. The ruling also applies to couples who married in other jurisdictions. As I discussed in my last TaxVox post, the […]

Taxes: A Big Gun In The War on Poverty

When Lyndon Johnson declared his War on Poverty 50 years ago this month, he could not have imagined how many battles would be fought through the Tax Code. In the ‘60s and early ‘70s, the safety net was built almost entirely on spending programs.  Back then, policymakers created Medicare, Medicaid, student loan programs, and Head […]

Tax Complications for Same-Sex Couples in Utah (and Elsewhere)

The battle over same-sex marriage in Utah not only raises important questions about marriage law; it also further complicates income tax filing for gay couples who tied the knot during the few weeks when those nuptials were deemed legal. The problem: While federal courts hash out the legality of Utah’s same-sex marriages, gay couples who […]

Taxing Bitcoin

By now most everyone has heard of bitcoin. But exactly what is it? And how should it be taxed? Bitcoin is usually described as virtual currency. That’s useful shorthand, but is it really money? And should it be taxed as if it is? Or is it a capital asset? How about a commodity? And then […]

Rethinking Homeownership Subsidies

Tax expenditures for homeownership, such as deductions for mortgage interest and property taxes and the partial exclusion for capital gains on the sale of a primary residence, have long been recognized as ineffective, regressive, and extraordinarily expensive—costing $121 billion in 2013 alone. Until now, most reforms—including the Bowles-Simpson deficit-reduction plan—have focused on restructuring the mortgage […]

Time To Park The Commuter Tax Subsidy

Am I the only one who thinks today’s commuter tax subsidies are nuts? The issue is in the headlines because at midnight tonight, thanks to yet another dose of congressional inaction, the amount of pre-tax dollars mass transit commuters can put aside will fall from a maximum of $240 a month to $130. At the […]

The US Income Tax Burden, County by County

Differences in income and other characteristics mean that federal income tax  burdens vary substantially across counties. While the median federal income tax burden across counties is about $3,400, approximately 10 percent of counties  have average tax burdens less than $2,100 and around 10 percent of counties have  average tax burdens over $6,700. Counties with high federal […]