Pension & Benefits News House Ways and Means Committee approves Tax Reform 2.0 package
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Monday, October 1, 2018

House Ways and Means Committee approves Tax Reform 2.0 package

By Pension and Benefits Editorial Staff

The House Ways and Means Committee debated the GOP Tax Reform 2.0 three-bill package in a September 13, 2018 markup that ran almost seven hours and approved it. The measure is expected to reach the House floor for a full chamber vote by the end of this month. House Republicans unveiled the much anticipated “Tax Reform 2.0” legislative package on September 10, 2018. The package consists of three separate bills, which focus on individual and small business tax cuts, retirement savings, and business innovation.

Tax Reform 2.0. The Tax Reform 2.0 package includes:

  • The American Innovation Bill of 2018 (H.R. 6756);
  • The Family Savings Bill of 2018 (H.R. 6757); and
  • The Protecting Family and Small Business Tax Cuts Bill of 2018 (H.R. 6760).

The package aims to make permanent the individual and small business tax cuts enacted through 2025 under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA, P.L. 115-97). Additionally, it would create new incentives for retirement savings.

Retirement, family-friendly savings. Tax Reform 2.0 will include provisions to help businesses better provide retirement plans for workers by relaxing and simplifying rules for participation in employee plans, according to listening session handouts obtained by Wolters Kluwer. Additionally, reforms will be included that exempt small retirement accounts from mandatory payouts and eliminate the age limit on IRA contributions.

Further, a new Universal Savings Account (USA) would be created to offer families a flexible savings tool, and 529 Education account funds would be permitted for payments related to trade schools, home schooling, and student loans. Additionally, families would be permitted to access retirement account funds without penalty when welcoming a child by birth or adoption.

Criticism from Democrats. Democratic lawmakers are criticizing House Republicans’ Tax Reform 2.0 efforts. “With this second attempt at major tax legislation, congressional Republicans have doubled down on their initial tax scam and are yet again putting the wealthiest, most privileged Americans ahead of average, hardworking families,” Ways and Means ranking member Richard Neal (D-MA) said in a September 10 statement.

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