It’s a cold day In Ames, Iowa, but it’s toasty warm with 315 or so eager participants in the last session of this year’s ISU Center for Agricultural Law and Taxation Farm and Urban Tax Schools!
It’s a fun school, with lots of good attendees with great, challenging questions. I’ve enjoyed working on the Day 1 panel with emcee Roger McEowen and IRS Taxpayer Liason Kristy Maitre
“In economic development, if you’re explaining, you’re losing.” An article at WCFcourier.com makes an often-overlooked point about how economic development spiffs that complicate the tax law end up backfiring:
A simpler tax system may top all other requests from the business groups, said Steve Firman, director of government relations for the Greater Cedar Valley Alliance and Chamber.
Firman pointed out that Iowa ranked 40th among states in the Tax Foundation’s 2014 tax climate comparisons because it is tough to explain the complexity of federal deductibility that blurs Iowa’s true tax picture.
Firman, explaining his position, pulled out a line he said he likes to use:
“In economic development, if you’re explaining, you’re losing,” he said.
Iowa’s byzantine tax system, with its dozens of special breaks, requires a lot of explaining. The Tax Update’s Quick and Dirty Tax Reform Plan, with low individual rates and no corporate tax, would be a much better sell.
William Gale, The Year in Taxes: From the Fiscal Cliff to Tax Reform Talks (TaxVox):
Although Camp and Baucus do not appear to have reached agreement on how much revenue should be raised or on how to raise it, the two leaders have nonetheless raised some interesting ideas. But the sorry state of tax reform can probably best be summed up by a small business owner who attended the New Jersey stop of a listening tour that the two chairmen held last summer. She urged the two leaders to “get rid of the deductions that don’t affect me.” As long as that attitude prevails, meaningful tax reform will not happen.
The same dynamic is at work in Iowa.
Annette Nellen, What’s My Rate? Challenges of Understanding 2013 Federal Taxes
Paul Neiffer, How Many 2013 Tax Brackets
Peter Reilly, Euro Pacific Capital’s Peter Schiff Defends His Tax Protesting Father Irwin Schiff Peter has a lot of interesting background on tax protester Irwin and his controversial, but much more prudent, son. And: “I can’t blame Peter Schiff for sticking up for his dad. I would too, if I still had one.”
TaxProf, The IRS Scandal, Day 221
In what is (and was) a huge scandal, Mr. Rizzo and his cronies basically used the City of Bell as their own personal piggy bank. He’s going to be going to state prison for 10 to 12 years (his sentencing will be in March). The scandal allegedly included salaries of up to $800,000; gas tax money being used for these salaries; and falsifying city documents to hide the salaries. The city council members from that time period are awaiting trial.ta
Just a humble public servant.
News from the Professon: Grant Thornton Employees Break Out Dynamic Christmas Sweaters for Holiday Party
The party’s over. Unemployed German couple accused of tax fraud after caught hosting sex parties. They had a $250, er, cover charge.
Tags: Annette Nellen, economic development, Going Concern, Jack Townsend, Jason Dinesen, Paul Neiffer, Peter Reilly, Quick and Dirty Iowa Tax Reform Plan, Russ Fox, tax crime, TaxProf, William Gale, William Perez