The President's Advisory Panel on Federal Tax Reform held its third meeting in Tampa on Tuesday, with the objective of understanding how the existing tax system affects business taxpayers. "Small business and self-employed taxpayers, in particular, are burdened by the complexity of our tax code and bear a substantial proportion of the estimated $125 billion in compliance costs," said Connie Mack, chairman of the panel. "As we will learn, it is these same small businesses that are a powerful engine driving our country -- they employ over half of all private sector employees and generate 60 to 80 percent of new jobs." Small-business owner David Hurley told the panel that the tax code places a tremendous burden on the nation's leading job creators. "If you are a big corporation with a compliance department or a tax attorney on staff to help navigate the various tax laws at the federal, state and local levels, then compliance issues aren't nearly as thorny as they are for small businesses," he said. "But if you are a small business owner, in addition to dealing with compliance requirements, you might also be taking out the garbage, ordering inventory and hiring employees."

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