"Tax Policy Forecast for 2015"Accounting Today
Marc Gerson discussed the results of the 2015 Tax Policy Forecast Survey in relation to the Obama Administration's position on tax reform. "There was continuing and increased frustration with where tax reform is," Gerson said. "A lot of that is focused on the Administration. The survey results show an increased level of realization that the Administration has not given significant priority to reform."
Gerson, former majority Tax Counsel to the U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Ways and Means, added, "I think there is a lot of uncertainty about the Administration position because there is no comprehensive proposal. There was a framework document and a budget proposal, but it's hard for taxpayers and trade associations to cobble those together and understand what the Administration plan is." In addition to uncertainty, taxpayers also seem concerned that revenue offsets may become standalone administration proposals rather than a part of a tax reform package as originally intended. "The notion is that the Administration, within the 2012 framework document or the budget proposal, has a significant number of revenue offset proposals. Where there are no significant tax reform efforts, there is a concern that the offsets could be used outside tax reform to fund other priorities," Gerson said.
In lieu of tax reform, businesses are again relying on tax extenders to remain in place for 2015. But there's no guarantee of what the extenders package will look like, Gerson said, noting that it is both difficult and risky for businesses to plan investments based on a layering of predictive guesswork -- if Congress will act, when it will act and how it will act.