This happened in Downtown Des Moines over the weekend:
YouTube Video Courtesy star105
Preservationists wanted to save the building, the old YMCA. I never understood this. Some beautiful buildings have been lost in Des Moines, but this isn’t one of them. If you aren’t willing to buy a building and fix it up yourself, it doesn’t seem right to tell the owners that they have to do it with their own money.
But did they get a tax break for the implosion? Did they get to write off the cost of the building when they brought it down? It would seem logical — obviously the building is a total loss. But no, it doesn’t work that way. Internal Revenue Code Section 280B is pretty clear:
In the case of the demolition of any structure—
(1) no deduction otherwise allowable under this chapter shall be allowed to the owner or lessee of such structure for—
(A) any amount expended for such demolition, or
(B) any loss sustained on account of such demolition; and
(2) amounts described in paragraph (1) shall be treated as properly chargeable to capital account with respect to the land on which the demolished structure was located.
So not only is there no write-off of the building, the cost of the demolition itself is capitalized, along with any remaining basis in the building — to be recovered only when the land is sold someday. So the income tax law doesn’t encourage implosions. Pretty much the opposite.
Jack Townsend, IRS Makes FOIA Disclosures to Tax Analysts Regarding OVDP and Streamlined Processing. “One point that was already known to practitioners is that rejection of the transition streamlined relief inside OVDP is not a determination of wilfulness so that, upon opt out, the wilfulness penalty is pre-determined.”
Peter Reilly, Rand Paul Suffers Setback In Foreign Reporting Lawsuit
Kristine Tidgren, Let the Motions Begin: Drainage Districts Seek Partial Summary Judgment. Des Moines Water Works is suing upstream drainage districts for not keeping nitrates out of the river.
Annette Nellen, Obamacare – can pieces be removed? “Obamacare has too many complicated tax provisions in addition to many complicated non-tax provisions.”
Sonya Miller, Freezing the Refunds of Our Guests (Procedurally Taxing). “We are aware of a group of nonresident taxpayers (taxpayers that fall under the rules for aliens temporarily present in the United States as students, trainees, scholars, teachers, researchers, exchange visitors, and cultural exchange visitors) who had their 2014 refunds frozen.”
TaxProf, The IRS Scandal, Day 877, 878, 879. They’re still talking about impeaching Koskinen. If the administration really wants to build trust in the IRS, they’ll dump him. Until they do so, we can assume his stonewalling and stiff-arming of the GOP appropriators is the behavior the administration wants out of him.
Scott Greenberg, New Study Shows that Tuition Deduction Does Not Increase College Attendance (Tax Policy Blog):
Last year, Bulman and Hoxby published a similar study of three federal education credits, which concluded that all three have a “negligible” effect on college attendance. This finding was in stark contrast to the Obama administration’s claim that the expansion of the American Opportunity Tax Credit made it possible for 12 million more students to earn a college degree.
The increase in subsidies over the years coincides with wild increases in tuition costs. I don’t believe that’s a coincidence.
Renu Zaretsky, Hope’s Limits, Math, and Cuts. Today’s TaxVox headline roundup talks about the apparent death of an international tax reform effort and efforts to improve IRS verification of earned income tax credit eligibility.
Russ Fox, There Is No Magic OID Process. Just like there is no Tax Fairy.
Me, Chasing the Tax Fairy. My latest at IowaBiz.com, the Des Moines Business Record business professionals’ blog. I discuss four manifestations of the Tax Fairy cult – The ESOP Fairy, the Home-based Business Fairy, the Pennies-on-the-dollar Fairy, and the Classic 105 fairy that Hank Stern spotted.