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Business Roundtable (BRT) is an association of chief executive officers of leading U.S. companies working to promote sound public policy and a thriving U.S. economy.

The clock is ticking on expiring taxes -- and a huge economic impact

Mar 15, 2012
Matthew M. Miller

Too much U.S. tax policy exists today in the form of temporary individual and business tax provisions!  Entering 2012, 101 tax provisions either expired in 2011 (60 provisions) or will expire in 2012 (41 provisions).  By contrast, in 1999 the comparable count was just 12 provisions.

The lengthy list of longstanding temporary business provisions includes policies that drive innovation - such as the R&D credit – and international policies – such as the active financing income provision and the “look through” rules - that further U.S. companies’ efforts to compete against their global competitors. 

While extension of expiring individual and business tax provisions is no substitute for a modernized, competitive tax system that is permanent in its design, the United States cannot afford to let important existing tax provisions expire before a permanent tax code is in place. 

Urgent action is needed to continue these important provisions.  The recent debate on extenders-related amendments to the Highway Bill in the U.S. Senate has made it clear that Senators from both sides of the aisle support the business tax extenders.  Accordingly, support for these longstanding temporary business tax provisions should not be controversial. 

Congress should immediately extend the expired business tax provisions from last year.  This is an achievable legislative accomplishment that both sides of the aisle can coalesce around in an election year.  Extending these provisions can enhance the competitiveness of American businesses and boost U.S. jobs.  Let’s get it done!

For more information on the extenders and tax reform, see the testimony of Business Roundtable President John Engler submitted for the Senate Finance Committee hearing, Jan. 31, 2012, "Extenders and Tax Reform: Seeking Long-Term Solutions."

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