WASHINGTON, DC — Every year, every one of us across East Alabama prepares for and usually dreads Tax Day. That day in mid-April when we ensure we have gotten our tax returns filed on time.
According to the non-partisan Tax Foundation, each American will work 107 days just to pay their Federal, state and local taxes. That’s a lot of work, and Americans are rightly asking these days what exactly they’re getting for their tax dollars. It goes without saying that during these tough times, we should not be increasing the number of days people must work just to pay their taxes.
As of writing, taxes are not only on the minds of families and businesses, but they continue to be a hot topic on Capitol Hill. Lawmakers in both the House and Senate are taking different approaches to revamp our complicated, cumbersome tax system and help contain our rapidly rising debt.
I am most interested in pursuing a simplification of our tax code. A flatter and fairer tax code with fewer loopholes would go much farther toward leveling the playing field and helping bring our massive debt under control. Getting this done shouldn’t be so difficult. Our tax code is too large, too long and costs Americans far too much in time and expense just to comply with the IRS.
With the national unemployment rate at 8.2 percent and Alabama’s unemployment rate at 7.6 percent, I also believe as Congress debates this issue that now is not the time to raise taxes on any American. We should be focused like a laser on trying to save and create good paying jobs in this weak economy, especially by our small businesses.
Just this week, the House of Representatives passed a bill that addresses both taxes and helping our small businesses. The Small Business Tax Deduction bill, which I voted for, would cut taxes for small businesses of 500 people or less by 20 percent, helping small businesses thrive and grow. This bill is one of over 30 the House of Representatives has passed to help America’s job creators. By providing some tax relief, these small businesses should be able to create and keep good paying jobs across the country.
The tax reform debate will continue throughout this year. If you have ideas as to how we can make the tax code simpler and fairer, please send me your thoughts.