Voices

In the blogs: Gallimaufries

Stung by new deduction limits; LTC subsidies; nexus for everyone; and other highlights from our favorite tax bloggers.

Gallimaufries

  • Taxable Talk (http://www.taxabletalk.com/): California’s “Train to Nowhere,” the alleged high-speed rail that would link San Francisco and Los Angeles (originally), and, now, the thriving metropolises of Shafter (just north of Bakersfield) and Merced, is in deep trouble: The U.S. Department of Transportation canceled funding of nearly $929 million. And the feds might want $2.5 billion returned.
  • Federal Tax Crimes (http://federaltaxcrimes.blogspot.com/): In United States v. Flete-Garcia, a tax refund case at heart although money laundering of the proceeds of tax crimes was among the more serious charges, the court opens with a paragraph useful at least for some uncommonly used words (perhaps “gallimaufry of alleged errors” heads the list?).
  • Rubin on Tax (http://rubinontax.floridatax.com/): Alva and Alberta Pilliod recently were awarded $2 billion in punitive damages from Monsanto, related to claims of cancer from using Roundup weed killer. Unfortunately, the big winners here are not the Pilliods, but the U.S., the State of California and their attorneys, due to changes in the deductibility of legal fees in the 2017 Tax Act.
  • Tax Vox (https://www.taxpolicycenter.org/taxvox): The Trump administration is (very quietly) looking at ways to reinvigorate the flagging private long-term care insurance market. The ideas being considered would make some regulatory changes and create new tax subsidies to encourage consumers to purchase private LTC insurance. Note: “They would send an important signal that the administration recognizes that this private insurance currently is not serving many middle-income consumers and that the federal government should work with states to ‘regrow’ the private market.”

Due or delay?

  • TaxProf Blog (http://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/): CDP officially stands for Collection Due Process — or is it Collection Delay Process, because delay in administrative collection activities is really the main result taxpayers get from CDP? At the Tax Court level, a look at how delay generally helps neither taxpayers nor the IRS.
  • National Taxpayer Advocate (https://taxpayeradvocate.irs.gov/about/nta-blog): So why and how does the IRS ignore economic hardship when it comes to tax liability?
  • IRS Mind (https://www.irsmind.com/): A look at how and why for two out of five taxpayers, taxes do not end on filing day.

Pod bay doors

  • The Income Tax School (http://www.theincometaxschool.com/blog/): Is updating your website on your spring-cleaning checklist? When was the last time you made any major updates beyond adding blogs or editing service descriptions? How does your site compare with other prep businesses — including competitors and businesses bigger than yours?
  • Solutions for CPA Firm Leaders (http://ritakeller.com/blog/): Preparing returns, figuring depreciation, routine accounting work and figuring out if discount coupons can also go toward restaurant specials: how computers may or may not be taking over.

Stars in the flag

  • Summing It Up (http://blog.freedmaxick.com/summing-it-up): A summary of the majority of states’ changes to tax rates and their apportionment ratios and methods through the year.
  • Mauled Again (http://mauledagain.blogspot.com/): Yet another instance of a wealthy professional sports franchise owner trying to get taxpayers, almost all of whom are poor or middle class, to pay for a private activity — in this case, the NFL’s Carolina Panthers and their proposed move to Rock Hill, S.C.
  • Tax Foundation (https://taxfoundation.org/blog): Across the countries of the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development, excise taxes on gasoline often fund infrastructure projects. America uses gas tax revenue to support the highway trust fund, which pays for transportation projects; this conforms to the benefit principle, as users of infrastructure are directly supporting it through the levy on gasoline. Too bad America’s gas tax is the second lowest relative to other countries in the OECD.
  • Tax, Society & Culture (http://taxpol.blogspot.com/): How the international tax system is pretty much in perfect conflict with its sustainable development goals because of the way it allocates profit across jurisdictions.
  • Taxjar: (http://blog.taxjar.com/) A look at economic nexus in New Mexico.
  • Avalara (https://www.avalara.com/us/en/blog.html): Forty-five states plus D.C. have a general sales tax, and almost all of them require out-of-state sellers that do a certain amount of business in the state to collect and remit sales/use tax. How long before the remaining stars on the flag do the same?