House Passes Small Business Expensing, Form 1040 EZ Expansion; Congressional Efforts on ETI Repeal and Extenders Stall Until September

The House on July 21, 2004 unanimously passed the Tax Simplification for America’s Job Creators Bill of 2004 (HR 4840). The bill would extend for two years the Code Sec. 179 $100,000 expensing limit, that will otherwise fall to $25,000 after 2005. The bill also extends the increased phase out limit under Code Sec. 179, includes software as Code Sec. 179 property, and indexes for inflation the $5 million gross receipts test requirement for using the cash method of accounting.

The House on July 21, 2004, also passed by voice vote the Tax Simplification for Americans Bill of 2004 (HR 4841). The bill would double to $100,000 the taxable income limit for use of Form 1040 EZ, index the limit for inflation, and change the “Head of Household” filing status to “Single Head of Household” as a clarification.

Congress ran out of time before its August recess to get a conference committee started on the American Jobs Creation Bill of 2004 (HR 4520), which is focused on ETI repeal and a large variety of business tax breaks. It also failed in a last minute effort to pass legislation that would extend some tax breaks scheduled to expire at the end of 2004, including at a minimum: the expanded 10% tax bracket; accelerated marriage penalty relief in the standard deduction and 15% tax bracket; and the child tax credit increase. Congressional leadership promised to return to both matters in September.


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