President Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs act into law on Dec. 22, 2017. The package includes a reduction in the corporate tax rate to 21 percent from 35 percent starting in 2018, a repeal of alternative minimum tax for corporations and it doubles the exemption levels for the estate tax.
“We welcome the signing of this bill into law, the first meaningful tax reform effort in many years. Hopefully, this bill lays the necessary groundwork for Congress to give its full attention to infrastructure investment in the first part of 2018,” said Michael W. Johnson, NSSGA president and CEO.
NSSGA was very active in ensuring the tax-exempt status of private activity bonds stayed intact for state and local infrastructure projects by talking directly with members of Congress and sending letters to conferees. The final package also keeps percentage depletion, the LIFO accounting method and Like-Kind Exchanges for real estate.
Congress also addressed funding for the federal government, giving final approval on Dec. 21, 2017 to a short-term extension to keep the government running for three more weeks. The spending bill, which now heads to President Trump to be signed into law, would maintain current levels of spending through Jan. 19.
Now that an additional short-term bill has passed, Congress is expected to look at a long-term bill with higher budget caps so that appropriators can allow the federal government to spend the $1 billion for highways, bridges and airports called for in the FAST Act. In these changes to government spending for FY2018, NSSGA is also supporting an increase to the cap for Passenger Facility Charge (PFC) from $4.50 to $8.50 which is expected to boost airport infrastructure improvements.