House Gives $334 Billion Tax Break to 25 Richest Americans

The House of Representatives gave 25 of the nation’s billionaires a $334 billion tax break on April 16 when it voted 240-179 to repeal the estate tax. The nearly 100-year old tax raises $27 billion a year for the U.S. government. Of the 2,662,000 Americans who died in 2013, just 3,700 of their estates paid any estate tax – one out of every 700 estates.

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Thousands of New Yorkers Take a Direct Role in City’s Budget Process

Last week, thousands of New York City residents completed an eight month-long participatory budget process in which they voted on how to allocate $25 million of their taxes in their communities. The city first experimented with participatory budgeting in 2011 when four City Council members allowed their constituents to decide how to use $1 million in discretionary funds provided by the city on community projects in their wards. This time around, 24 of New York City’s 51 Council members joined in the effort.

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Offshore Tax Dodgers Jeopardize Long-Term Financial Health of American Small Businesses

Every small business would need to pay $3,244 in additional taxes to offset the $110 billion in federal and state revenue lost every year to offshore tax avoidance by multinational corporations, according to a new report from U.S. PIRG.

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Inequality and the Estate Tax: What You Need to Know

Beginning this evening, the House is expected to vote to repeal the estate tax – one of our nation’s key checks on tremendous accumulations of wealth by a handful of the richest Americans.

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General Electric Restructuring Surprise: Company to Pay 20 Times More in Taxes Than It Paid in the Last Decade

In a dramatic move, General Electric (GE) announced on Friday that it would be selling off its financial service businesses. GE expects to shed $200 billion of assets in the restructuring, returning $90 billion to shareholders in the form of dividends, stock buybacks, and new shares in a company to be spun-off.

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Budget Cuts at the IRS Leave Phones Ringing and Hurt the Middle Class

As Tax Day approaches, the news is filled with stories of unanswered phone calls at the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The stories will spark an eye-roll or a sarcastic mumble about our “unresponsive government.” But most will fail to mention that the IRS is an agency dealing with a 17 percent cut to its budget since 2010. These cuts have meant there are 26 percent fewer IRS workers answering questions than there were five years ago, even though the number of people filing returns has grown by seven million.

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New Report: Tax Fairness -- Not a Tax Holiday -- Is the Best Way to Fund Our Infrastructure and Create Middle-Class Jobs

WASHINGTON, April 1, 2015—President Obama has just sent Congress a bill that would replenish the Highway Trust Fund through a 14 percent tax on offshore corporate profits. There is bipartisan support for even deeper tax cuts for companies that have stockpiled profits in tax havens, where they remain untaxed until "repatriated" to the United States. A new report, to be released April 1 by the Center for Effective Government and the Institute for Policy Studies, reveals why such tax breaks would be dangerously short-sighted.

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Six Charts Explain How Workers’ Compensation Is Deteriorating

Workers’ compensation is a state-based government program that has protected American workers for close to a century. Throughout the early part of U.S. history, injured workers were taken care of by the communities they were a part of: churches, worker’s benevolence associations, neighbors, or extended family. But when workplace deaths and injuries soared during the industrial revolution, government stepped in to help.

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Reject Government Contractors Who Draw the Blinds on Sunshine

Once a year, Sunshine Week rolls around and presents us with an opportunity to assess how open and transparent our government is. But with more and more public services being contracted out to private companies, sunlight’s “disinfectant” effects are being lost, according to a new report by In the Public Interest – Closing the Books: How Government Contractors Hide Public Records. The report shows how government contractors are hiding the data needed to evaluate whether contracting out to private companies is a better deal for taxpayers than leaving services in the hands of public employees.

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Progressives Present Alternative Budget: A Raise for America

Investing in our nation’s future requires funding. This week, the Congressional Progressive Caucus (CPC) revealed its vision of a public investment agenda that will get Americans working and give more people the opportunity to succeed. It pays for these investments through a series of progressive tax proposals, in which wealthy Americans and prosperous corporations would pay a fair share toward building the nation’s economic strength. 

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