August 28, 2014

House Panel Advances Six More Costly Tax Extenders

  • The nation's fiscal future depends on the balance between the spending in the federal budget and the revenues flowing into the treasury. Tax policy...

Last week the House Ways and Means Committee voted to advance bills making six more expiring tax provisions permanent without offsetting the lost revenue.

If these six bills are all enacted, they would increase budget deficits by $400 billion in the first ten years. The single largest provision in the package would permanently extend and expand bonus depreciation, which was originally meant to be a temporary stimulus measure when it was enacted in 2009.

This continues an alarming trend in recent weeks by the House to make temporary tax breaks permanent without offsetting them. The total cost of tax extenders endorsed by Ways and Means in recent weeks is approximately $800 billion—and not a dollar of it is paid for.

These bills violate the pay-as-you-go standard and would effectively erase all new revenues generated by last year’s fiscal cliff deal. Congress should abandon this piecemeal strategy of charging individual tax extenders on the nation’s credit card and instead pursue comprehensive tax reform.