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

With outlook bleak for public option, lawmakers shift to new 2020 health care agenda
A day after the legislative session ended and still reeling from the defeat of a sweeping public option bill, lawmakers and Gov. Ned Lamont vowed in June to revive the health care overhaul next year. But as the General Assembly gets closer to reconvening, prospects for a resurrected public option measure are looking dim, and the debate around health care reform has shifted to cost containment, prescription drugs and reinsurance proposals that have bipartisan support.
Stanley+Techstar’s Demo Day bolsters Hartford as a budding venue for tech startups
A nervous excitement filled the air at Hartford’s Bushnell Theater Monday, as CEOs from 10 startups involved in Stanley+Techstars Accelerator mingled with more established members of the business community, before pitching their companies on-stage for Demo Day. The night marked the second year New Britain-based manufacturing giant Stanley Black & Decker partnered with Techstars, a startup accelerator for technology-focused companies, to provide resources and mentorship to the leaders of...
OHS HealthscoreCT Gets a Cost Estimator for Medical Care
The Connecticut Office of Health Strategy (OHS), joined by Lieutenant Governor Susan Bysiewicz, Senator Matt Lesser, co-chair, and Senator Kevin Kelly, ranking member, of the legislature’s Insurance and Real Estate Committee, today launched the Healthscore CT cost estimator, a consumer tool that allows users to compare the cost of medical care at Connecticut hospitals and provider networks. The interactive website allows consumers and providers to search, sort, and filter by location, health...
Build now, pay later? It’s not going to be that easy.
As Gov. Ned Lamont fishes for legislative support for his new transportation plan, he’s dangling some juicy bait: hundreds of millions in low-interest federal loans that can rebuild infrastructure and jump-start Connecticut’s economy now — but don’t come due for 10 or 15 years. If that sounds a little too good to be true, however, you wouldn’t be wrong. That’s because while the governor reels in lawmakers with visions of new bridges and wider highways, his plan also comes with a hook:...
Labor applauds the Greenwich governor it helped elect
Connecticut’s millionaire governor delivered a populist message Friday in his first appearance before the AFL-CIO since taking office, highlighting first-term victories on their behalf and asking them to pressure Democratic legislators to back a $20 billion transportation plan he intends to roll out this month.

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Accounting Standards and Regulations

Treasury, IRS release final and proposed regulations on new 100% depreciation
The Treasury Department and the Internal Revenue Service today released final regulations (PDF) and additional proposed regulations (PDF) under section 168(k) of the Internal Revenue Code on the new 100% additional first year depreciation...
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.

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Federal News

Kiplinger: CT, NY are 2nd and 3rd least-tax-friendly states
Connecticut and New York are respectively the second- and third-least-tax-friendly states in the nation, according to the latest annual ranking by personal finance magazine Kiplinger. The publication ranks states according to the sum of income, sales, property and gas taxes paid by a hypothetical married couple with two dependent children, an earned income of $150,000, and qualified dividends of $10,000. Illinois was judged the least tax-friendly in the country.
CT considers ‘next steps’ after judge tosses suit challenging SALT tax
A federal court on Monday dismissed a lawsuit by Connecticut and three other high-income states seeking to overturn a new cap on the deductibility of state and local income taxes on federal returns. The so-called state and local income tax, or SALT, cap was limited to $10,000 during a massive federal tax overhaul in 2017. The limit is an amount Connecticut, New York, New Jersey and Maryland said hurt wealthy states with high property taxes.
Judge tosses suit by CT, other ‘blue states,’ that challenged SALT cap
A federal court on Monday dismissed a lawsuit by Connecticut and three other high-income states seeking to overturn a new cap on the deductibility of state and local income taxes on federal returns. The so-called state and local income tax, or SALT, cap was limited to $10,000 during a massive federal tax overhaul in 2017. The limit is an amount Connecticut, New York, New Jersey and Maryland said hurt wealthy states with high property taxes.
IRS releases new Tax Gap estimates; compliance rates remain substantially unchanged from prior study
The Internal Revenue Service today released a new set of tax gap estimates on tax years 2011, 2012 and 2013. The results show the nation's tax compliance rate is substantially unchanged from prior years. The gross tax gap is the difference between true tax liability for a given period and the amount of tax that is paid on time. "Voluntary compliance is the bedrock of our tax system, and it's important it is holding steady," said IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig.
Senate Bill Would Boost IRS Funding
The Senate Appropriations Committee advanced a fiscal 2020 spending bill today that would fund the IRS at $11.4 billion, including an additional $200 million for enforcement activities to address the tax gap. The IRS has long pleaded with Congress for additional funding to aid enforcement and collection efforts but has dealt with budget cuts for many years, particularly after a targeting scandal during the Obama administration in which the agency was accused of holding up the tax-exemption...

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