This month’s featured article from TEF.

Election 2016 and Tax Reform

By John Hendrickson

As the 2016 election looms closer many candidates are focusing on tax reform. This includes several Republicans who are running for the presidential nomination who are campaigning on tax reform, which includes lowering rates and Democrats who are also seeking their respective party’s nomination who are campaigning on creating a more progressive income tax system with higher rates — especially on upper income earners. Congress is also considering tax reform, but history has demonstrated that passing significant tax reform is very difficult and takes compromise. Perhaps one substantial piece of legislation to protect taxpayers has recently been introduced by Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Senator John Thune (R-SD). The Taxpayer Bill of Rights Enhancement Act is meant to provide further protections of taxpayers against abuse and corruption from the Internal Revenue Service (IRS).[1]

The objective of the Taxpayer Bill of Rights Enhancement Act is to pass “comprehensive legislation to improve customer service at the IRS, create new taxpayer protections, and update and strengthen existing taxpayer protections.”[2] Strengthening and protecting taxpayers against abuse “comes amid gross mismanagement and inappropriate actions by IRS employees that have shaken what little confidence taxpayers may have had in the agency.”[3]

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