On The Hill

Tax Update (March 18)

Extenders Hearing   The House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Select Revenue Measures held a hearing this past Tuesday (Mar. 12) which discussed the fate of the tax extenders package moving forward, as well as the overall impact of temporary tax policy in the United States. Republicans and Democrats on the committee, as well as…
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Trade Update (March 18)

President Trump’s Fiscal Year 2020 Budget Request   On Monday (Mar 11), Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Acting Director Russ Vought released the president’s budget request. The budget priorities include: curbing wasteful spending, strengthening border security, providing for a robust national defense, combating the opioid epidemic, investing in America’s students, modernizing the government for the 21st…
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Health Update (March 18)

Trump Budget   This week, President Trump unveiled his Fiscal Year 2020 budget for the federal government. The president asked most executive departments and agencies to cut budgets by at least 5 percent. The budget reflects several health priorities such as implementing the VA MISSION Act, increased research funding for childhood cancers, funding to combat the opioid…
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Tax Update (March 4)

  Tax Rates   The forthcoming budget resolution from House Democrats will include a proposal to raise federal revenue, and a hike in the corporate tax rate could be one-way lawmakers accomplish that. House Budget Committee Chair John A. Yarmuth (D-KY) said he thinks that “somewhere between 21 and 28 [percent] is the right number”…
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Trade Update (March 4)

  US-China Ways & Means Hearing   This week all eyes were on Capitol Hill as US Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer testified before the House Ways and Means Committee. The hearing was well timed, as President Trump announced on Saturday (Feb 23) that he would not increase the Section 301 tariffs on March 2, as…
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Health Update (March 4)

Drug Pricing   The Senate Finance Committee met this week for its second drug pricing hearing. The highly anticipated appearance of several pharmaceutical executives gave senators the opportunity to speak face to face with key players in the drug pricing process. While senators highlighted stories from their states about the unaffordability of prescription drugs, they explored some…
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Tax Update (February 25)

Opportunity Zones   The fate of the opportunity zones bill pending before the Puerto Rico legislative assembly remains uncertain. The bill would grant exemptions to U.S. residents investing in opportunity zones on Puerto Rico’s local capital gains tax, building projects, tax-free dividend distributions, and allow for an expedited permitting process for special projects. If the…
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Health Update (February 25)

Grandfathered Health Plans   This week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) put out a Request for Information (RFI) regarding grandfathered health plans and group health insurance coverage. The RFI indicated that there is “little information available regarding such coverage” and that the Departments of Treasury, Labor, and Health and Human Services ordered to…
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Trade Update (February 25)

US-China Trade Relations   Trade negotiators met in Washington, DC this week (Feb 19-22) for a fourth round of trade talks. According to sources familiar with the talks, negotiators are drafting “six memorandums of understanding (MoU) on structural issues: forced technology transfer and cyber theft, intellectual property rights, services, currency, agriculture, and non-tariff barriers to trade.”[1]…
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Trade Update (February 18)

US-China Trade Negotiations   US and Chinese officials met in Beijing this week in an attempt to reach a trade deal by the March 1 deadline. Deputy US Trade Representative Jeffrey Gerrish arrived on Monday (Feb 11), while USTR Robert Lighthizer and Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin arrived on Thursday (Feb 14). At the conclusion of the meetings,…
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Health Update (February 18)

Congress and President Trump have averted another government shutdown. On Thursday, the House and Senate overwhelmingly approved a spending package that will fund the remaining nine government agencies through September 30, 2019. President Trump signed the bill, but said that he is “not thrilled” with the legislation. In a Rose Garden speech this morning, he announced that he…
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Tax Update (February 11)

Digital Tax   After a 3 percent European Union tax proposal on digital services failed to pass, France is now looking to impose a fee of its own. The tax proposal would target two types of services under a draft framework for a national digital tax. The tax is targeted at US companies that play…
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Trade Update (February 11)

State of the Union Address   On Tuesday (Feb 5), President Trump gave his State of the Union Address. The address was originally scheduled for Tuesday, January 29th, but was postponed due to the government shutdown. During the address President Trump discussed the ongoing negotiations with China, saying, “it must include real, structural change to end unfair…
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Health Update (February 11)

President Donald Trump delivered his State of the Union Address this past Tuesday, and two health issues earned mentions. The president announced a plan to direct $500 million in funding for pediatric cancer research, a number Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) wrote off as not enough, seeing as the National Cancer Institute’s yearly budget is roughly $6…
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Tax Update (February 4)

Tax Extenders Latest   Reports this week indicated that extenders are back on the top of the lists for tax writers. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell’s (R-KY) Chief Tax Counsel, Jay Khosla, stated that while he views tax extenders as “easy” – versus fixing glitches and other problems in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act,…
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