Category: Featured
Tax Bills Advance; Latest on Appropriations, Debt Ceiling, Health

HOUSE: Rules Comm. and Floor action on tax bill (HR 1) this week; House passage of tax bill is likely.

SENATE: Finance Committee marking-up Senate version this week, with consideration of amendments to begin Nov. 14.

  • List of Amendments filed for Finance Comm. markup

  • On Monday, 11/13, the Penn Wharton Budget Model, an analysis issued through the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, found the House tax bill would increase deficits by as much as $1.7 trillion over 10 years, even after accounting for additional economic growth that tax cuts could spur.
    APPROPRIATIONS: Stop-gap funding for FY 2018 will expire December 8; at that time, the federal government will shut down unless another stop-gap continuing resolution is enacted or full-year appropriations for FY 2018 are enacted.

    DEBT CEILING: Treasury Dept. said in a November 1, 2017 statement that extraordinary accounting measures will "allow the government to continue to meet its obligations through January 2018," despite the current suspension of the debt ceiling ending on December 8. ...

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    What You Need to Know About Tax Reform

    Nov. 2, 2017: House Ways & Means Committee unveiled the Chairman’s Mark of the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act” (HR 1)

    • CLICK HERE for the JCT description of the Chairman's Mark [released Nov. 6]
    • CLICK HERE for the JCT distributional analysis (by income group) [released Nov. 3]
    • CLICK HERE to read the full legislative text of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
    • CLICK HERE to read the section-by-section summary of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.
    • CLICK HERE for JCT revenue estimates (Chairman's Substitute Amendment to be considered at Ways & Means Committee on Nov. 6)

    See our tax reform page for a summary of key provisions, revenue estimates, and outlook.

    Treasury Dept. said in a November 1, 2017 statement that extraordinary accounting measures will "allow the government to continue to meet its obligations through January 2018," despite the current suspension of the debt ceiling ending on December 8.  See our Debt Ceiling page for details....

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    What You Need to Know About Senate’s Budget-Tax Resolution and Complex Year-End Spending Negotiations

    Nov. 6, 2017:  House Ways & Means Committee mark-up scheduled
    Nov. 2, 2017: 
     House Ways & Means Committee unveils the Chairman’s Mark of the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.”

    See our tax reform page for a summary of key provisions, revenue estimates, and outlook....

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    Budget Resolutions Advancing to Enable GOP Tax Cuts; Shutdown & Debt Ceiling Loom

    Senate Likely To Consider Budget Resolution Next Week: Last Thursday the Senate Budget Committee voted to report an FY 2018 Budget Resolution on a party-line 12-11 vote. The Senate plan would launch a filibuster-proof tax cut bill that would add $1.5 trillion to the public debt to pay for corporate and pass-through tax cuts, lowering the top individual tax rate, eliminating the estate tax, and other tax cuts.

    FY 2018 appropriations remain stalled and a fight looms over paying for disaster aid....

    A major debt ceiling fight in December remains a possibility, given increasing partisan discord over ACA repeal, tax cuts, and immigration -- and the fact that the debt ceiling bill is "must-pass" legislation.......

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    Senate Budget Committee Releases Budget Resolution

    The Senate Budget Committee today (Friday, 9/29) released the text of a fiscal 2018 budget resolution that would launch the process for GOP tax cuts without Democratic votes.

    The 89-page legislative text includes reconciliation instructions that allow the Senate Finance Committee to add up to $1.5 trillion to federal deficits over the next 10 years, reflecting the GOP decision to come up with offsets to reduce the net cost of their multi-trillion tax cuts to $1.5 trillion over 10 years.

    The filibuster-proof reconciliation mechanism allows Republican-only tax legislation to advance with 50 votes in the Senate.  However, the filibuster-proof mechanism is constrained by the Byrd Rule which does not allow increases in the debt beyond the 10-year budget planning window.  Therefore, any tax cuts that are not paid for will have to expire at the end of 10 years.  See our explanation of Reconciliation and the Byrd Rule.

    The budget also includes instructions for the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee to advance filibuster-proof legislation.

    According to Politico, a vote is expected next week and the resolution is expected to be approved by the Committee.  If the resolution clears the full Senate, a common version will have to be negotiated with the House.  The House version includes controversial cuts of more than $200 billion in entitlement programs.

    Here is a summary of the draft FY'18 budget resolution and summary tables.   ...

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    On Sept. 8, 2017 President Trump signed HR 601, an emergency measure negotiated with congressional Democratic leaders, and passed by the Senate 80-17 and by the House 316-90 (all the "no" votes being Republican). The bill has four components:

    1.  Provides $15.25 billion in emergency supplemental appropriations for Hurricane Harvey and other disasters, including $7.4 billion for the FEMA Disaster Relief Fund (passed a day before FEMA’s disaster funds would have been exhausted), $450 million for the Small Business Administration Disaster Loan Program, and $7.4 billion in Community Development Block Grant funding for areas most affected by the 2017 disasters;

    2.  Extends the National Flood Insurance program, which was due to expire September 30, to December 8, 2017;

    3.  Suspends the debt ceiling through December 8, 2017, temporarily avoiding a Treasury default on U.S. obligations; and

    4. Provides continuing appropriations (effectively, a “continuing resolution”) to fund the federal government at current FY 2017 levels through December 8, 2017, avoiding a federal shutdown when the new fiscal year begins October 1.

    While the measure provides much-needed emergency disaster relief, the “fiscal cliff” has only been postponed until December 8th, when a federal shutdown and economically catastrophic default faces the nation absent bipartisan agreement on spending levels and the debt ceiling – both requiring 60 votes in the Senate.

    (The exact date of a default crisis will depend on Treasury’s cash balances on December 8 and the timing of government spending on disaster relief.)...

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    Tax Cuts and Infrastructure Stalled; October Shutdown, Default Loom

    Congress faces a train wreck when they return after Labor Day:

    1. Federal government shutdown looms on October 1st unless Republicans and Democrats reach bipartisan agreement on new federal appropriation caps for FY 2018.
    2. U.S. Treasury default looms in early October as GOP remains deeply divided on how to pass a debt ceiling increase.
    3. Tax Cuts are stalled due to lack of GOP agreement on an FY 2018 Budget Resolution.
    4. Infrastructure investment is stalled due to opposition to public financing and lack of a capital investment budget.
    5. 80% of Americans want to mend, not end, the ACA according to a new survey.

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