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 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Energy Tax Incentives: Measuring Value Across Different Types of Energy Resources

Energy Tax Incentives: Measuring Value Across Different Types of Energy Resources

Date: March 19, 2015
Creator: Sherlock, Molly F. & Stupak, Jeffrey M.
Description: This report presents a comparison of the cost of tax incentives associated with fossil and renewable energy resources, relative to amount of energy produced using each type of resource. The report also reviews other analyses that compare the cost of energy tax incentives relative to production, across different types of energy technologies.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Research Tax Credit: Current Law and Policy Issues for the 114th Congress

Research Tax Credit: Current Law and Policy Issues for the 114th Congress

Date: March 13, 2015
Creator: Guenther, Gary
Description: This report describes the current status of the research tax credit, summarizes its legislative history, discusses policy issues it raises, and describes legislation to modify and extend it.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Tax-Preferred College Savings Plans: An Introduction to 529 Plans

Tax-Preferred College Savings Plans: An Introduction to 529 Plans

Date: February 23, 2015
Creator: Crandall-Hollick, Margot L.
Description: This report provides an overview of the mechanics of 529 plans and examines the specific tax advantages of these plans for those families saving for college.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Tax Provisions that Expired in 2014 ("Tax Extenders")

Tax Provisions that Expired in 2014 ("Tax Extenders")

Date: February 6, 2015
Creator: Sherlock, Molly F.
Description: This report provides a broad overview of the tax extenders that retroactively extend expired tax provisions, including the Tax Increase Prevention Act of 2014, which made tax provisions that had expired at the end of 2013 available to taxpayers for the 2014 tax year.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Dependent Care: Current Tax Benefits and Legislative Issues

Dependent Care: Current Tax Benefits and Legislative Issues

Date: February 4, 2015
Creator: Meyerson, Noah P.
Description: This report discusses current tax treatment of dependent care expenses under those two provisions and options for changing those policies. Two income tax provisions help taxpayers pay for the costs of caring for children and older dependents who cannot care for themselves.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Qualified Charitable Distributions from Individual Retirement Accounts: Features and Legislative History

Qualified Charitable Distributions from Individual Retirement Accounts: Features and Legislative History

Date: February 4, 2015
Creator: Topoleski, John J. & Sidor, Gary
Description: A provision of the Pension Protection Act of 2006 (P.L. 109-280) allows tax-free distributions from Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) for charitable purposes. This report describes the IRA Qualified Charitable Distribution (QCD) provision.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Dynamic Scoring

Dynamic Scoring

Date: January 21, 2015
Creator: Gravelle, Jane G.
Description: This report explains dynamic scoring, including the types of effects incorporated and the types of models used, as well as what groups conduct or have conducted macroeconomic analysis of tax changes.
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Tax Havens: International Tax Avoidance and Evasion

Tax Havens: International Tax Avoidance and Evasion

Date: January 15, 2015
Creator: Gravelle, Jane G.
Description: The first section of this report reviews what countries might be considered tax havens, including a discussion of the Organization for Economic Development and Cooperation (OECD) initiatives and lists. The next two sections discuss, in turn, the corporate profit-shifting mechanisms and evidence on the existence and magnitude of profit-shifting activity. The following two sections provide the same analysis for individual tax evasion. The report concludes with overviews of alternative policy options, a summary of legislation enacted in the 111th Congress, and a summary of specific legislative proposals.
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PILT (Payments in Lieu of Taxes): Somewhat Simplified

PILT (Payments in Lieu of Taxes): Somewhat Simplified

Date: December 10, 2014
Creator: Corn, M. Lynne
Description: This report explains Payments in Lieu of Taxes (PILT), with an analysis of the five major factors affecting the calculation of a payment to a given county. It also describes the effects of recent legislative changes to PILT.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
PILT (Payments in Lieu of Taxes): Somewhat Simplified

PILT (Payments in Lieu of Taxes): Somewhat Simplified

Date: December 10, 2014
Creator: Corn, M. Lynne
Description: This report explains Payments in Lieu of Taxes (PILT), with an analysis of the five major factors affecting the calculation of a payment to a given county. It also describes the effects of certain legislative changes to PILT in recent years.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Addressing the Long-Run Budget Deficit: A Comparison of Approaches

Addressing the Long-Run Budget Deficit: A Comparison of Approaches

Date: December 9, 2014
Creator: Gravelle, Jane G.
Description: The growth of the national debt, which is considered unsustainable under current policies, continues to be one of the central issues of domestic federal policy making. On August 2, 2011, Congress adopted, and the President signed, the Budget Control Act (BCA; P.L. 112-25), which might be viewed as an initial step in addressing long-run debt issues. This report examines alternative approaches to reducing the deficit, relating to the immediate issues arising from the BCA and the extended tax cuts as well as to ongoing, longer-term decisions about how to bring the debt under control. It focuses on the trade-offs between limiting the provision of defense and domestic public goods, reducing transfers to persons including entitlements for the elderly and those with low income, reducing support for state and local governments, and raising taxes. Using projections of the debt and deficit, it also addresses how limiting reliance on one source of deficit reduction creates pressure on other sources.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC): An Overview

The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC): An Overview

Date: December 3, 2014
Creator: Falk, Gene & Crandall-Hollick, Margot L.
Description: The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) is a refundable tax credit available to eligible workers earning relatively low wages. This report provides an overview of the EITC, first discussing eligibility requirements for the credit, followed by how the credit is computed and paid. The report then provides data on the growth of the EITC since it was first enacted in 1975. Finally the report concludes with data on the EITC claimed on 2012 tax returns, examining EITC claims by number of qualifying children, income level, tax filing status, and location of residence.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
U.S. International Corporate Taxation: Basic Concepts and Policy Issues

U.S. International Corporate Taxation: Basic Concepts and Policy Issues

Date: December 2, 2014
Creator: Keightley, Mark P. & Stupak, Jeffrey M.
Description: This report provides a general introduction to the basic concepts and issues relevant to the U.S. international corporate tax system. The explanations provided in this report emphasize the underlying concepts of the international tax system and are intended to be as simplified as possible.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The Corporate Income Tax System: Overview and Options for Reform

The Corporate Income Tax System: Overview and Options for Reform

Date: December 1, 2014
Creator: Keightley, Mark P. & Sherlock, Molly F.
Description: This report presents information and research on the corporate tax to help policy makers understand and evaluate arguments presented in the tax reform debate. This report first reviews the structure of the corporate income tax. Data on which companies pay the corporate tax, corporate tax revenue, and how the U.S. system compares to the rest of the world are then presented and analyzed. Next, the economic effects of the corporate tax are reviewed--including a discussion of the purpose of the corporate tax, who bears the burden of the tax, and how to evaluate alternative corporate tax systems. The report then reviews broad reform options and concludes with a comparison of specific proposals that have been offered.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Taxation of Internet Sales and Access: Legal Issues

Taxation of Internet Sales and Access: Legal Issues

Date: December 1, 2014
Creator: Lunder, Erika K.
Description: This report first looks at the Constitution's requirement of nexus, including an examination of whether recent state laws comply with the nexus standard and federal legislation that would affect the standard. It then looks at the scope of the Internet Tax Freedom Act (ITFA) moratorium on multiple or discriminatory taxes on electronic commerce and taxes on Internet access.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
"Amazon Laws" and Taxation of Internet Sales: Constitutional Analysis

"Amazon Laws" and Taxation of Internet Sales: Constitutional Analysis

Date: November 28, 2014
Creator: Lunder, Erika K. & Pettit, Carol A.
Description: As more purchases are made over the Internet, states are looking for new ways to collect taxes on online sales. There is a common misperception that the U.S. Constitution prohibits states from taxing Internet sales. This report discusses "Amazon laws", which try to capture uncollected taxes on Internet sales and yet still comply with the Constitution's requirements.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Overview of the Federal Tax System

Overview of the Federal Tax System

Date: November 21, 2014
Creator: Sherlock, Molly F. & Marples, Donald J.
Description: The major sources of federal tax revenue are individual income taxes, Social Security and other payroll taxes, corporate income taxes, excise taxes, and estate and gift taxes. This report describes the federal tax structure, provides some statistics on the tax system as a whole, and presents analysis of selected tax concepts.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Federal Proposals to Tax Marijuana: An Economic Analysis

Federal Proposals to Tax Marijuana: An Economic Analysis

Date: November 13, 2014
Creator: Gravelle, Jane G. & Lowry, Sean
Description: This report focuses solely on issues surrounding a potential federal marijuana tax. First, it provides a brief overview of marijuana production. Second, it presents possible justifications for taxes and, in some cases, estimates the level of tax suggested by that rationale. Third, it analyzes possible marijuana tax designs. The report also discusses various tax administration and enforcement issues, such as labeling and tracking.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Federal Deductibility of State and Local Taxes

Federal Deductibility of State and Local Taxes

Date: November 10, 2014
Creator: Maguire, Steven & Stupak, Jeffrey M.
Description: This report provides a brief history of deductible state and local taxes, and discusses deduction for real estate property taxes, deductions for income, sales, and use taxes. The report also discusses policy alternatives and current legislation.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
An Introduction to the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit

An Introduction to the Low-Income Housing Tax Credit

Date: November 7, 2014
Creator: Keightley, Mark P. & Stupak, Jeffrey M.
Description: This report discusses the low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) program, which is one of the federal government’s primary policy tools for encouraging the development and rehabilitation of affordable rental housing. These non-refundable federal housing tax credits are awarded to developers of qualified rental projects via a competitive application process administered by state housing finance authorities.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The Medical Device Excise Tax: Economic Analysis

The Medical Device Excise Tax: Economic Analysis

Date: November 3, 2014
Creator: Gravelle, Jane G. & Lowry, Sean
Description: This report reviews the issues surrounding the medical devices tax within the framework of basic principles surrounding the choice of commodities to tax under excise taxes. The next section describes the tax and its legislative origins. After that, the report analyzes the arguments for retaining and repealing the tax.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC): An Overview

The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC): An Overview

Date: October 22, 2014
Creator: Falk, Gene
Description: This report discusses the earned income tax credit (EITC), established in the tax code in 1975, which offers cash aid to working parents with relatively low incomes who care for dependent children.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Recently Expired Community Assistance Related Tax Provisions ("Tax Extenders"): In Brief

Recently Expired Community Assistance Related Tax Provisions ("Tax Extenders"): In Brief

Date: October 21, 2014
Creator: Lowry, Sean
Description: This report briefly summarizes four community assistance-related tax provisions included in the Expiring Provisions Improvement Reform and Efficiency (EXPIRE) Act, which are the New Markets Tax Credit, Empowerment Zone Tax Incentives, allocation of bond limitations for Qualified Zone Academy Bonds, and the American Samoa Economic Development Credit. The EXPIRE Act would extend each of these provisions for two years (through 2015). A discussion of their economic impact and related extension bills in the 113th Congress is also included.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department
Recently Expired Charitable Tax Provisions ("Tax Extenders"): In Brief

Recently Expired Charitable Tax Provisions ("Tax Extenders"): In Brief

Date: October 17, 2014
Creator: Gravelle, Jane G. & Sherlock, Molly F.
Description: This report discusses the four charitable tax provisions are discussed in this report: the enhanced charitable deduction for contributions of food inventory; tax-free distributions from individual retirement accounts for charitable purposes; basis adjustment to stock of S corporations making charitable contributions of property; and special rules for contributions of capital gain real property for conservation purposes.
Contributing Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department