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Senate Tax Reform Bill Said to Be Coming Week of November 6

Posted on November 1, 2017 by Stephen K. Cooper, David van den Berg

The Senate Finance Committee expects to release its tax reform legislation the week of November 6, Senate Finance Committee member Patrick J. Toomey, R-Pa., told Tax Analysts October 31, although he and other committee members said the exact date of release has not been finalized.

Toomey said the Finance Committee would probably mark up its bill after the House Ways and Means Committee finishes its work. Ways and Means Chair Kevin Brady, R-Texas, is expected to release his tax reform bill November 2 and start marking it up the week of November 6. It originally had been slated for a November 1 unveiling, but was pushed back a day late on October 31.

Toomey’s remarks came after Politico quoted Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., saying earlier in the day that Senate Republicans expect to release their tax bill November 8. But Toomey and fellow Finance Committee members Pat Roberts, R-Kan., and Tim Scott, R-S.C., couldn’t confirm that date.

Still, Scott suggested that a November 8 release date is plausible. “Bob Corker is a powerful member who knows a lot of things I may not know,” he said.

A spokesperson for Finance Committee Chair Orrin G. Hatch, R-Utah, told Tax Analysts only that the committee is continuing its work on a comprehensive tax reform bill. “Chairman Hatch intends to lay down a mark for the committee to advance in the coming weeks,” the spokesperson said. “Details will be released when finalized.”

Toomey said committee members are meeting every day, sometimes multiple times per day. And Scott said the committee is “moving down the road quite nicely.”

The Senate measure will lower the tax burden for most taxpayers, Toomey said, while businesses would see lower rates to boost their competitiveness. The legislation will include specific provisions to address gaming of the lower tax rate for passthrough businesses, he said. 

Hatch reiterated to reporters that he’d like to pass the bill by the end of the year. He said it “may be a little ambitious, but I think we can.”

Follow Stephen K. Cooper (@ScooponTaxes) and David van den Berg (@TAtaxDavidVDB) on Twitter for real-time updates.