Tax cuts and health subsidies would also be extended
People who are out of work for long stretches would get expanded unemployment benefits through the end of the year under a bill Democratic lawmakers plan to pass next week.
The bill would also extend, for a year, about 50 popular tax cuts that expired in January. The bill would be paid for, in part, by tax increases on investment managers and some U.S.-based multinational companies.
House leaders said they plan to vote on the bill early next week, leaving just a few days for the Senate to act before Congress goes on a weeklong vacation for Memorial Day. House leaders had planned to vote this week, but they were still waiting for some cost estimates, and a few issues were unresolved.
Delays in extending the tax breaks have left thousands of businesses unable to plan for their tax liabilities. Delays in passing a long-term extension of emergency unemployment benefits have forced thousands of laid-off workers to live month to month with no certainty of income.
Unemployment benefits for many will start to run out June 2, unless Congress acts. The bill would extend unemployment benefits for up to 99 weeks in many states, at a cost of $47 billion.
Laid-off workers would continue to get subsidies to buy health insurance through the COBRA program through the end of the year, at a cost of $7.8 billion. States would get $24 billion to states to help cover Medicaid costs.
“This is a bill about creating jobs, preventing outsourcing of jobs overseas, closing loopholes that corporations and wealthy individuals (use for) avoiding U.S. taxes and meeting the needs of those who have lost their jobs through no fault of their own,” House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., said.
The bill started as a one-year extension of popular tax breaks, but it has grown into a grab bag of unfinished business lawmakers hope to complete before Memorial Day. The overall cost of the bill will top $150 billion and could approach $200 billion.
Most of that spending would be added to the federal budget deficit, generating opposition from Republicans and unease among some Democrats.
“It really seems to be a deficit extender bill, not a tax extender bill,” said Rep. Dave Camp of Michigan, the top Republican on the House Ways and Means Committee.
The tax cuts, which total more than $30 billion, would be retroactive to Jan. 1 but would again expire at the end of December. They include a property tax deduction for people who don’t itemize, lucrative credits that help businesses finance research and develop new products, and a sales tax deduction that mainly helps people in states without income taxes.
Among the other provisions:
–An increase in the 8-cent-a-barrel tax that oil companies pay to finance the Oil Spill Liability Trust Fund, in response to the BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Lawmakers were still negotiating the exact increase Thursday, said Rep. Sander Levin, D-Mich., chairman of the Ways and Means Committee.
–A three-year delay in imposing a scheduled 21 percent cut in Medicare payments to doctors. The cuts would be delayed until 2014, when lawmakers will have to address the issue again. The cost was still being calculated Thursday, but it was expected to be about $60 billion.
–Expansion of the Build America Bonds program, which subsidizes interest costs paid by local governments when they borrow for construction projects, at a cost of $4 billion.
–$1 billion for summer jobs programs, for workers ages 16 to 21.
–$1.5 billion in relief for farmers who suffered crop damage from natural disasters in 2009.
–$4.6 billion to settle long-running class action lawsuits brought by black farmers and American Indians. One lawsuit concerned the government’s management and accounting of more than 300,000 trust accounts of American Indians. The other is a discrimination lawsuit brought by black farmers against the Agriculture Department.
The bill would raise taxes on multinational companies by $14.5 billion. It would also increase taxes on investment managers, including hedge fund managers, venture capitalists and many real estate investment partnerships.
Investment managers typically get a fee to manage funds or assets. They also get a share of the profits earned for investors above a certain level.
Under current law, the profit-sharing fees, called carried interest, are taxed as capital gains, with a top rate of 15 percent. The bill would tax 75 percent of the fees as regular income, with a top tax rate of 35 percent, scheduled to rise to 39.6 percent in 2011.
Estimates were incomplete Thursday, but the tax was expected to raise about $20 billion over the next decade. The tax increase is opposed by the financial services industry.
More Related Stories
- Illinois' fracking and coal rush is a national crisis
- Developers evict historic women's shelter to build luxury hotel
- Kaitlyn Hunt refuses plea offer, will go to court over high school relationship
- DHS admits "impossible" to control 3D-printed guns
- Journalists file suit against Manning trial secrecy
- Russia: Syrian regime ready to talk peace
- Report: Nearly a quarter of all Americans struggle to afford food
- Ted Cruz against the world
- Louie Gohmert: Women should be forced to carry nonviable pregnancies to term
- 2 men arrested for endangering commercial aircraft
- Oversized load blamed for bridge collapse
- This is what Guy Fieri looks like as a balloon
- Iran hackers aiming at U.S. energy firms
- Lawyers release data in attempt to discredit Trayvon Martin
- Anonymous rallies behind Kaitlyn Hunt
- Bridge collapse: Part of "aging infrastructure"
- Mistrial in penalty phase of Arias case
- Amanda Bynes arrested after hurling bong from window
- Interstate 5 bridge collapses north of Seattle
- Mississippi could begin prosecuting women for miscarriages
- Teenage girl claims she was beaten up for looking like Taylor Swift
Featured Slide Shows
The week in 10 picsclose X
- 1 of 11
Lisa Montgomery embraces her nephew Thursday after a tornado tore apart her home in Cleburne, Texas. The twister killed six people and destroyed entire swaths of the North Texas town.
Credit: AP/LM Otero
Jack McMahon, the defense attorney for abortion doctor Kermit Gosnell, speaks outside the Criminal Justice Center in Philadelphia Tuesday. His client was convicted of killing three babies in his clinic, and will serve multiple life sentences.
Credit: AP/Matt Rourke
A photo taken Monday captures Vice President Joe Biden's response to a Milwaukee second-grader's innovative proposal to end America's epidemic of gun violence. This guy!
Credit: AP/Jenny Aicher
Sen. Rand Paul, R-Ky., flanked by a grouper-eyed Michele Bachmann, addresses the IRS' admission that it targeted Tea Party groups in advance of the 2012 election. In an op-ed for CNN Thursday, the Kentucky senator slammed the president for his faux outrage.
Credit: AP/Molly Riley
Ousted IRS chief Steven Miller is sworn in on Capitol Hill Friday. Miller testified before the House Ways and Means Committee on the extra scrutiny the agency gave conservative groups applying for tax-exempt status.
Credit: AP/J. Scott Applewhite
Attorney General Eric Holder pauses as he testifies on Capitol Hill before the House Judiciary Committee Wednesday. Holder is under fire, among other things, for the Justice Department's gathering of phone records at the Associated Press.
Credit: AP/Carolyn Kaster
O.J. Simpson sits during an evidentiary hearing at Clark County District Court in Las Vegas, Nev., Thursday. Simpson, who is currently serving a nine-to-33-year sentence in state prison for armed robbery and kidnapping, is using a writ of habeas corpus to seek a new trial.
Credit: AP/Las Vegas Review-Journal/Jeff Scheid
Major Tom to ground control: On Sunday astronaut Chris Hadfield recorded the first music video from space, a cover of David Bowie's "Space Oddity."
Credit: AP/NASA/Chris Hadfield
When it rains it pours. President Barack Obama speaks during a news conference Thursday with Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, inexplicably inspiring an #umbrellagate Twitter meme.
Credit: AP/Jacquelyn Martin
A smoke plume rises high above a road block at the intersection of County A and Ross Road east of Solon Springs, Wis., Tuesday. No injuries were reported, but the the wildfire caused evacuations across northwestern Wisconsin.
Credit: AP/The Duluth News-Tribune/Clint Austin
Recent Slide Shows
- 1 of 11