New Posts

Feb 8, 2016

Top 400 Taxpayers See Tax Rates Rise, But There’s More to the Story

As Americans were gathering party supplies to greet the New Year, the Internal Revenue Service released their annual report of cumulative tax data reported on the 400 tax r...

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Feb 4, 2016

Chlorine Bleach Plants Needlessly Endanger 63 Million Americans

Chlorine bleach plants across the U.S. put millions of Americans in danger of a chlorine gas release, a substance so toxic it has been used as a chemical weapon. Greenpeace’s new repo...

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Jan 25, 2016

U.S. Industrial Facilities Reported Fewer Toxic Releases in 2014

The Toxics Release Inventory (TRI) data for 2014 is now available. The good news: total toxic releases by reporting facilities decreased by nearly six percent from 2013 levels. Howe...

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Jan 22, 2016

Methane Causes Climate Change. Here's How the President Plans to Cut Emissions by 40-45 Percent.

  UPDATE (Jan. 22, 2016): Today, the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) released its proposed rule to reduce methane emissions...

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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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State and Local Taxes Fall More Heavily on Lower-Income Americans

The wealthiest one percent of households – those with an annual income of at least $419,000 a year – pay half the tax rate of households earning less than $18,000, a new report by the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy (ITEP) shows. Who Pays? A Distributional Analysis of the Tax Systems in All 50 States, which examines tax rates at the state and local levels, concludes: the lower one’s income, the higher one’s overall effective (actual) state and local tax rate.

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Small Biz Owners: Big Businesses, Millionaires Not Paying Fair Share

The American Sustainable Business Council, Main Street Alliance, and Small Business Majority released a new poll yesterday gauging small business owners’ opinions on taxes. On everything from the tax rates of the wealthy to corporations' exploitation of loopholes in the tax code, small business owners from across the nation say big businesses and millionaires aren’t paying their fair share.

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State of the Union's Call for Tax Fairness is a Good Start

“The state of the union is getting stronger.” That is how President Obama characterized the current state of the union. But, as we wrote in our State of the Union preview on Tuesday, we still have a long way to go before the economy is back on its feet. In our article, we recommended doing away with the looming budget cuts, increasing taxes on capital gains and financial transactions, and using the additional revenue to pay for more infrastructure projects and public protections. So what fiscal issues did Obama talk about in his speech on Tuesday?

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The Carried Interest Loophole-Closer is the Kitty and Congress is trying to put it in the Microwave

No kittens were harmed in the making of this blog post

Citizens for Tax Justice (CTJ) released an important call to action along with a report this afternoon about carried interest, the loophole that allows multimillionaire investment fund managers to subject their income to lower tax rates than the average citizen. The "extenders" tax package, which is currently before the Senate, includes a carried interest loophole-closer, but it seems that senators are listening to the fund managers' well-heeled lobbyists and their ridiculous claims against this commonsense policy change.

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How Big of a Joke is Our Tax System?

Monkeys on Bikes

Anyone with a cursory knowledge of our current tax code can tell you that it is broken. According to the Committee for a Responsible Federal Budget (CRFB), which posted an interesting piece this morning on the need for comprehensive tax reform, our tax system "is inefficient, distorts behavior, stifles economic growth, and raises insufficient revenue to fund current or projected levels of government spending." CRFB included several suggestions for the President's Economic Recovery Advisory Board (PERAB), which was due to release a set of publicly generated recommendations on reforming the tax code today, but postponed the release until after the holidays.

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No Budget is Better than the Senate Budget

The budget resolution approved last week by the Senate Budget Committee has nothing good to recommend it. It will hand more tax breaks to the extremely wealthy while slashing assistance to low-income working families and children. Funds for education, housing, the environment and a host of other services that benefit ordinary Americans will also be cut. Ironically, in spite of all these cuts, the committee?s resolution will increase -- not reduce -- the deficit.

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Child Tax Credit: The Poor as Political Theatre

The story is confusing. How did it end up that some Democrats voted against the House bill extending the refundable child tax credits to the 6.5 million low-income families who got left out of the latest tax break for the wealthy?

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Garbage In, Garbage Out: Two Bad Tax Cut Bills Won't Make One Good One

Conference negotiations to reconcile the tax cuts bills passed by the House and Senate are expected to begin tomorrow, and Congress hopes to pass a tax cut bill by the Memorial Day recess, although this may prove impossible.

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Poll Shows Administration?s Priorities Are Out-of-Touch with Country?s Needs

A recent poll conducted by National Public Radio (NPR), the Kaiser Family Foundation, and the Kennedy School of Government reveals much about how tax payers view current proposals to reduce taxes when compared with spending on education, Social Security, health care, and even reducing the deficit. The survey, conducted between February 5 and March 17, 2003, also revealed that many people feel they don’t know enough about various tax cut proposals to offer an opinion on them. This result is disconcerting, surely, but is also very interesting given the efforts of Treasury Secretary John Snow and other White House officials in recent months to educate Americans on the administration’s tax cut agenda through road shows across the country.

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Resources & Research

Living in the Shadow of Danger: Poverty, Race, and Unequal Chemical Facility Hazards

People of color and people living in poverty, especially poor children of color, are significantly more likely...

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A Tale of Two Retirements: One for CEOs and One for the Rest of Us

The 100 largest CEO retirement funds are worth a combined $4.9 billion, equal to the entire retirement account savings of 41 percent of American fam...

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