Weekly Legislative Update - January 6, 2020

President Signs H.R. 1865 into Law with WOTC and Other Extenders
A Short-term Victory for TIA on WOTC
Just before midnight Eastern time tonight, December 20, President Trump signed H.R. 1865 into law.
 
Thus, one-year extensions are in effect for WOTC, including VOW To Hire Heroes tax credits, and retroactive extensions through 2020 for Empowerment Zone tax benefits and Indian Employment tax credit.
 
We'll go further this year in 2020-our goal remains permanency and a stronger, more expansive WOTC extending to our nation's most disadvantaged people.

Brady Statement on Year-End Tax Package: 'This annual temporary tax circus needs to end'
The top Republican on the House Ways and Means Committee Kevin Brady (R-TX) released the following statement regarding the year-end tax package:
 
"Regrettably, business as usual prevailed in our efforts to reform these supposedly temporary, annual tax policy changes. The fight is not over - the focus turns to 2020. This annual temporary tax circus needs to end."
 
"Taxpayers deserve certainty, not midnight brinksmanship and short-term patches. I'm hopeful we can continue to work to reform these temporary policies, providing certainty, predictability, and growth."

TIA Supported RPM Act Introduced in U.S. House of Representatives
The "Recognizing the Protection of Motorsports Act of 2019" (RPM Act) has just been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-NC) and cosponsored by Rep. Raul Ruiz (D-CA). The bill number is H.R. 5434 and there are five other original sponsors: Reps. Richard Hudson (R-NC), Kurt Schrader (D-OR), Bill Posey (R-FL), Gil Cisneros (D-CA), and Michael Burgess (R-TX).

H.R. 5434 is the House counterpart to the Senate's version of the bill, S. 2602, which was introduced by Senators Richard Burr (R-NC) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) and currently has 28 bipartisan cosponsors (21 Rep. & 7 Dem.). 

The legislation will protect Americans' right to convert street vehicles-including cars, trucks and motorcycles-into dedicated racing machines, and the motorsports-parts industry's ability to sell products that enable racers to compete. 

The RPM Act reverses the EPA's interpretation that the Clean Air Act does not allow a motor vehicle designed for street use-including a car, truck or motorcycle-to be converted into a dedicated racecar. This American tradition was unquestioned for nearly 50 years until 2015 when the EPA took the position that converted vehicles must remain emissions-compliant, even though they are no longer driven on public streets or highways. 

The language in the House bill is paired down a bit from the Senate text, as E&C Committee Democrats made clear that they preferred a more straightforward bill and that these changes are necessary in order for the RPM Act to see action in the House.

The RPM Act has strong bipartisan support in both the House and Senate and has been subject to previous hearings as well as approval by the House Energy and Commerce Committee in 2017.

TIA's focus is on securing as many cosponsors as possible for each bill to demonstrate support for scheduling House E&C Committee and Senate Environment and Public Works Committee action.

Congress Repeals 'Cadillac' Tax- A Victory for TIA Members

 

As part of the bill President Trump signed on Dec. 20, there has been a repeal of the Affordable Care Act's (ACA) 'Cadillac tax.'

 

The U.S. Senate voted 71-23 Dec. 19 to approve the spending bill that included a repeal of the ACA's excise tax on high-cost, employer-sponsored healthcare plans, also known as the 'Cadillac tax.'

 

The House of Representatives approved the bill, H.R.1865, in a 297-120 vote.

 

The tax was set to take effect in 2022; it would have taxed employer-sponsored plans worth more than $10,200 for "self-only" coverage and $27,500 for other coverage.

 

TIA had long fought to repeal this tax as it would have had a harmful impact on many TIA businesses.