WASHINGTON— U.S. Senator Bill Cassidy, M.D. (R-LA), a member of the Senate Finance Committee, released the following statement after the Senate passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, legislation that would cut taxes for working families in Louisiana.
“The Tax Cut and Jobs Act cuts taxes for working and middle-income families,” said Dr. Cassidy. “It boosts the economy, repeals Obamacare’s individual mandate, preserves the Historic Tax Credit, gives tax relief to victims of the 2016 floods in North and South Louisiana and provides money to rebuild our coastline. This is a good bill for Louisiana and the United States.”
The bill doubles the Child Tax Credit to $2,000, lowers income tax rates across the board, nearly doubles the standard deduction to $12,000 for an individual and $24,000 for a couple filing jointly, preserves the Adoption Tax Credit as well as deductions for home mortgage interest and charitable contributions.
According to the Tax Foundation’s analysis, the bill will boost take-home pay for Louisiana families by more than $1,800 a year and create more than 12,600 new jobs in Louisiana alone. In an open letter to Congress, 137 economists announced their support for the tax reform effort, writing, “Economic growth will accelerate if the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act passes, leading to more jobs, higher wages, and a better standard of living for the American people.”
As a member of the Senate Finance Committee, Cassidy crafted or help spearhead several provisions in the Senate’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, including those that:
- Provide victims of last year’s floods in North and South Louisiana with $500 million in disaster tax relief, exempting them from tax penalties on early withdrawals of retirement account funds used for rebuilding and recovery, and allowing income tax deductions for qualifying personal casualty losses.
- Preserve the Historical Tax Credit, which since 2002 has facilitated over 782 projects in Louisiana, encouraging more than $2.5 billion in private rehabilitation investments and creating more than 38,000 jobs.
- Restore nearly $100 million in funding for coastal restoration projects in Louisiana, making up for the projected GOMESA revenue shortfall.
- Keep full business expense deduction for automobile, truck, boat, motorcycle, and farm implement dealers who use floor plan financing. This will ensure small business dealers are treated fairly and are not subject to the risk of paying higher taxes, protecting jobs and economic growth.
- Reduce potential effects of a new investment excise tax on large private college endowments, helping small institutions such as Centenary College of Louisiana.
- Preserve Private Activity Bonds (PABs), which are widely used for airport and seaport projects, affordable housing, and nonprofit health and education facilities. In 2016, over $72 billion in PABs were issued for investments in nonprofit hospitals and universities, along with over $12 billion in PABs for airports, housing, and rural public cooperatives.
- Keep existing business structure commonly referred to as IC-DISC (Interest Charge Domestic International Sales Corporation). This will encourage small and medium businesses to export goods made in Louisiana.
- Identified deficit reduction mechanisms to help pay for a state and local property tax deduction up to $10,000, and an increased deduction (17.4 to 23 percent) for small business owners’ qualified business income (“pass-throughs”).