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GOVERNOR SIGNS IOWA AMNESTY BILL

May 30, 2007

If they have a confessional at the Iowa Department of Revenue, this would be a good time to remodel it. Nobody will be using it for the next 13 weeks or so.

Governor Culver has signed the tax amnesty bill, SF 580. The bill forgives penalties and 1/2 of the interest during the amnesty period, which runs from September 4 thorugh October 31 of this year.

The Governor's website touts this as a "one-time" amnesty. Yes, one time, just like the last one in 1986.

The Tax Policy Blog has a post on the policy implications of tax amnesties:

What we wrote in 1985 holds true today: if lawmakers decide to implement tax amnesty programs, they should be accompanied by fundamental tax reform that makes the tax code simpler and easier to comply with.

Iowa has gone in the opposite direction, adding more loopholes targeted tax incentives to its tax law while doing nothing to lower rates or broaden the tax base. Iowa's incentive is purely a cheap temporary revenue fix that does nothing but build an expectation of future amnesties while making chumps of law-abiding taxpayers. But for those of us who charge for tax work by the hour, it truly helps our economic development during an otherwise slow time of year.

IOWA HOUSE PASSES TAX AMNESTY BILL

IOWA TAX AMNESTY BILL INTRODUCED

WAYS AND MEANS VOTES TO SCHMUCK IOWA TAXPAYERS

Roth & Company 2007 Iowa Tax Legislation Page

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