Capitol Corner



We had a very successful 2019 legislative session, defeating a sales tax on accounting and tax services proposal, stopping an increase to the CPA license fee, and addressing a number of other troublesome bills. Thank you all for playing an active role in our advocacy efforts. It would not have been possible without the help of all of you who heard our calls to action and emailed legislators, submitted testimony, donated to our digital advertising efforts, and more. Thank you!

Read the 2019 Connecticut Legislative Session Wrap-Up (pdf). 

View the complete text of Public Act 19-186 and Public Act 19-117. 

         

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We've got our eye on happenings at the Capitol! If 
state or federal legislation or accounting standards activity will affect you, your company, or your clients, we'll keep you updated here.

State News

DRS Issues Payroll Tax Commission Information Request to Employers
This week, DRS has sent two e-mails to certain employers – the first introduced the information request; the second includes a brief survey.
Hartford showing all the signs of revitalization — again
Downtown Hartford is a far different place than it was a decade ago, or even five years ago. More than a thousand new apartments occupy formerly vacant office buildings, with more on the way. A minor league ballpark can hardly be called new anymore, finishing up its third season with the Yard Goats. And UConn’s regional campus at Front Street is embarking on another fall semester, its third welcoming students to the city. Advertisement Remaining Time -0:25 “Whether it’s higher...
OPM: Pending hospital settlement makes surplus math uncertain
The state’s budget office is projecting a $126.1 million surplus for the fiscal year that began July 1, but that figure is almost certain to change in the months ahead. For one, changes in the economy, spending patterns and other factors will impact the forecast. Another uncertainty, according to the Office of Policy and Management’s first fiscal year 2020 budget projection, is a pending legal settlement between the state and the Connecticut Hospital Association.
CT offers limited protections if ACA is tossed
If the Affordable Care Act is abolished as the result of a legal battle over the health care law, not only will more than 300,000 state residents lose coverage, but a majority of those in Connecticut could be affected. That’s because Connecticut laws aimed at protecting consumers apply only to a minority of health insurance policies that cover state residents, and are limited in their scope and effectiveness.
As high-deductible health plans grow in popularity, some state officials want to rein them in
Health insurance policies with increasingly high deductibles have become the norm in Connecticut, and now, a top Democratic state lawmaker and his allies are taking aim at restricting or potentially even eliminating them.

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Accounting Standards and Regulations

While Connecticut Waits, Other States Take Action On Marijuana Legislation
While efforts to legalize recreational marijuana have stalled in Connecticut, those same efforts have made progress around the country. A new report from the Marijuana Policy Project (MPP) released earlier this week details the cannabis policy...
Regionals Ponder CPA Evolution
The “Guiding Principles” for transforming the CPA profession to meet constantly escalating technological advances were the primary focus of the June 2019 NASBA Regional Meetings. On June 11-12 the Eastern Regional Meeting was held in Washington,...
Facebook Crypto Plan Draws Fresh Fury From House Democrats
Facebook Inc. took a beating for a second straight day over its controversial cryptocurrency plans as Democratic lawmakers argued the proposal posed vast privacy and national security risks. At a Wednesday hearing before the House Financial...
Bitcoin Drops Below $10,000 Again as Congress Scrutinizes Libra
Bitcoin slid below $10,000 just three weeks after surging above it for the first time in more than a year as U.S. legislators expressed deep skepticism about the viability of cryptocurrencies.
AICPA Issues Auditing Standards for Employee Benefit Plans and Annual Reports
The American Institute of CPAs’ Auditing Standards Board has released a pair of auditing standards related to the financial statements of employment benefit plans and transparency in annual reports.

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Federal News

Tax cuts are back on the agenda. They're not a done deal
Central bankers will take center stage when they gather in Jackson Hole later this week. But for now, as investors sit and wait, monetary policy isn't what's generating the most buzz. That's right. Almost two years after US President Donald Trump and Republicans passed a $1.5 trillion tax cut package, fiscal stimulus has reentered the conversation.
74% of economists in survey see U.S. recession by end of 2021
A strong majority, 74 percent, of U.S. business economists appear sufficiently concerned about the risks of some of President Donald Trump’s economic policies that they expect a recession in the U.S. by the end of 2021. The economists surveyed by the National Association for Business Economics, in a report released Monday, mostly didn’t share Trump’s optimistic outlook for the economy, though they generally saw recession coming later than they did in a survey taken in February.
Tips for complying with GDPR, avoiding big fines
In its first year, the EU’s General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) yielded nearly 90,000 data breach notifications and two notable fines for companies that regulators said lacked compliance with the data privacy rules. Google was fined €50 million ($55 million) by French officials, and British Airways faces a fine of £183 million ($223 million) in the UK. Those are the big names; other smaller fines have been handed down since the regulation took effect in May 2018.
When It Comes to Data Privacy, States Are Battling Big Tech
Discomfort over the collection and sale of personal data led to a flurry of consumer data privacy bills in 2019, as state legislatures vied to follow California’s lead in giving users more control of personal information. But the legislative year ended with more of a whimper than a bang as well-funded tech giants and other business concerns rushed to oppose the bills, and even California is scrambling to fix details of its data privacy law before it takes effect in January.
5 principles for evolving CPA licensure
What does the CPA of the future look like? Does that person need the same skills and competencies CPA licensure requires today—or should changes be made to expand the pipeline of talent the profession needs for the future?

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