Voices

In the blogs: SALT and wounds

A fresh look at fraud; local tax moves; work propaganda; and other highlights from our favorite tax bloggers.

SALT and wounds

  • TaxProf Blog (http://taxprof.typepad.com/taxprof_blog/): “The Case For (and Against) Surrogate Taxation” examines how the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act significantly revised long-standing rules regarding the tax treatment of many employer-provided in-kind benefits. Instead of including the value of these benefits in the recipients’ taxable income, for the most part the new rules disallow employers a deduction for the cost of providing the affected benefits. Are the components of this legislative scheme — relying on cost of provision as the measure of taxable income and on imposing the nominal tax obligation on providers rather than recipients — distinct policy decisions?
  • Bloomberg Tax (https://pro.bloombergtax.com/news-insights/): Four eastern states have lost a legal challenge to a provision of the 2017 law that limited write-offs for state and local taxes, as a federal judge has thrown out a lawsuit seeking to block the cap.
  • Tax, Society & Culture (http://taxpol.blogspot.com/): A new conceptual framework for research into tax fraud? A look at the effectiveness — and the legitimacy — of current approaches to combating tax fraud, bringing new dimensions to previously identified trends in crime control.

No pain, no gain

All together

  • Tax Vox (https://www.taxpolicycenter.org/taxvox): The California legislature has moved to prohibit local governments from offering certain sales tax incentives to promote economic development and attract businesses. The governor has yet to sign, and critics have argued that such incentives shuffle economic activity from one neighboring city to another and “trap cities in a race to the bottom.” Are critics wrong?
  • Avalara (https://www.avalara.com/us/en/index.html): Baby It’s Cold Up There: Fall’s nexus news, including how Alaska’s local taxing municipalities look to unite to levy sales tax.
  • Tax Foundation (https://taxfoundation.org/blog): The Wisconsin Department of Revenue has released data showing the state’s general fund tax collections for fiscal 2019 were up nearly $1.2 billion from FY 2018, and nearly $703 million higher than anticipated. As noted by Wisconsin Revenue Secretary Peter Barca, much of this collections influx is attributable to a one-time phenomenon in which many businesses, where feasible, postponed earnings from 2017 until 2018 to take advantage of the new, lower federal corporate tax rate under the TCJA — a phenomenon not just in Wisconsin, but across much of the country.
  • Rubin on Tax (http://rubinontax.floridatax.com/): One recent case provides interesting facts and conclusions that should be of interest for those contemplating offshore asset protection trusts.
  • Federal Tax Crimes (http://federaltaxcrimes.blogspot.com/): How a district court confused analysis in approving the magistrate’s report and recommendation imposing a FBAR willful penalty in United States v. Rum.

Best blogs

  • Income Tax School (http://www.theincometaxschool.com/blog/): The real price of toxic employees can reach into the thousands — if not more.
  • Solutions For CPA Firm Leaders (http://ritakeller.com/blog/): Practitioners’ questions continue about marketing: activities, budgets, staffing, et al. A look at the Association for Accounting Marketing’s bi-annual Marketing Budget Benchmark Study.
  • Sagenext (https://www.thesagenext.com/blog): The top 10 best finance blogs that should be referred to by accountants, CPAs and small-business owners for trends, developments in the industry and to “be aware of how to bring about change in the current work propaganda.”
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