IFB advocates for improvements to tax reform bill

Members express support for the bill's lower rates, immediate and unlimited expensing and eventual repeal of the estate tax; offer suggestions to improve bill.

By Deana Stroisch

Nearly 1,000 Illinois farmers this week put last-minute pressure on key Republican congressional leaders to make sure farmers pay lower rates under the proposed House tax bill.

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Responding to an Illinois Farm Bureau action request, farmers sent emails to U.S. Rep. Kevin Brady, R-Texas, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee; and Rep. Peter Roskam, R-Wheaton, who also serves on the committee. Members sent emails to other key Republican members of Illinois’ congressional delegation urging them to contact Brady and Roskam.

The action request came during the committee’s four-day markup of HR 1, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. In about 30 hours, nearly 1,000 FBACT members made more than 2,500 contacts.

Related: Block hoping for estate tax repeal. Click here.

IFB members expressed support for the bill’s lower rates, immediate and unlimited expensing and eventual repeal of the estate tax. Members also offered five suggestions for improving the bill, including:

- Graduating rates for business income as they are for individual taxpayers.

- Clarifying self-employment taxes won’t increase for farmers, specifically exempting farmland rental income from self-employment taxes.

- Make expanded expensing provisions permanent to compensate for the loss of like-kind exchanges for equipment and livestock.

- Make Section 179 small business expensing permanent.

- Clarify the Schedule F business deduction for state and local taxes paid will continue without limitation.

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