Capitol Corner

We've got our eye on happenings at the Capitol! If state or federal legislation or accounting standards activity will affect you, your company, or your clients, we'll keep you updated here.

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Legislative Action Alerts

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Speak Out Now About Proposed License Fee Increase

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State News

Accountants, lawyers and boat sellers complain about Gov. Ned Lamont’s plan for $1 billion in new taxes
Facing more than $1 billion in new taxes over the next two years, accountants, boat sellers and others came to the state Capitol Friday to complain to lawmakers about the hikes contained within Gov. Ned Lamont’s budget proposal.
Statement From Governor Lamont’s Office: New Poll Shows Support for Adopting Tolls to Upgrade Aging Infrastructure
“The majority of Connecticut residents – over 50 percent – likely support tolling when they learn that the funds generated will be subject to protections, such as the state transportation lockbox, as approved by Connecticut voters, as well as federal law that mandates use on transportation infrastructure only. Today’s poll underscores Connecticut’s need to move forward with a sustainable, reliable and protected revenue source – 40 percent of which will be paid for by people who don’t even...
Connecticut Residents Don’t Agree On Tolls, But Want Better Roads
Everyone agrees Connecticut’s roads need to be repaired and no one wants to see a bridge collapse, but there seems to be little agreement about how to finance it. The opposition to Gov. Ned Lamont’s proposal to erect electronic tolls on Interstates 84, 91, 95, and Route 15 was visible and vocal Wednesday, but only about 50 people signed up to testify at a public hearing. Opponents packed the Legislative Office Building Wednesday morning, but many left before...
Lamont’s ‘debt diet’ hits an already lean nonprofit safety net
Connecticut’s private, nonprofit social services community has been struggling since the early 2000s with minimal growth in state funding for the vast array of programs it provides. And under Gov. Ned Lamont’s proposed “debt diet,” the industry — which serves an estimated 500,000 clients statewide — would temporarily lose a key $25 million grant program that pays for building repairs, information technology upgrades, new equipment and other capital needs.
Action Alert: Sales Tax on Tax Preparation Advances - Your Help Needed Now!
The initiative to expand the sales tax to include your tax return preparation and accounting services is advancing as you read this email!

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Accounting Standards and Regulations

SEC Accepts 2019 GAAP Financial Reporting Taxonomy and SEC Reporting Taxonomy
The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) today announced that the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has accepted the 2019 GAAP Financial Reporting Taxonomy. The Board also announced that the SEC has accepted the 2019 SEC...
Action Alert: Speak Out Now About Proposed License Fee Increase
As we mentioned in last week's Capitol Corner, Senate Bill No. 9, "An Act Adjusting Fees for Occupational Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations" has been introduced and  will be brought to a public subject matter hearing that the CTCPA will...
IRS Publishes Final Guidance On The 20% Pass-Through Deduction: Putting It All Together
I believe in giving credit where credit is due, and I'll be damned if the IRS doesn't deserve some serious credit. It was less than 13 months ago that Congress dumped 500 pages of sloppy statutory language on the Service in the form of the Tax...
Changes related to peer review proposed for UAA
The National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) is proposing changes to the Uniform Accountancy Act (UAA) Model Rules related to peer review programs. The newly proposed rules would change Article 7 of the UAA Model Rules and...
FASB Issues Narrow-Scope Improvements to Credit Losses Standard
The Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) today issued an Accounting Standards Update (ASU) that amends the transition requirements and scope of the credit losses standard issued in 2016. “Since issuing the credit losses standard, the...

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Federal News

Trump Tracker! Surgent's Trump Tracker, inspired by The New York Times, tracks the status of all changes proposed by President Trump that could affect CPAs and their clients in a user-friendly format that makes it clear where a change currently stands.

IRS Looks for Ways to Squelch New York, Connecticut SALT Workarounds
The Internal Revenue Service is considering issuing rules that could invalidate some of the last remaining strategies in New York and Connecticut to circumvent the state and local tax, or SALT, deduction cap that kicked in for the 2018 tax year. The IRS is “likely” to issue additional regulations to address high-tax states’ efforts to work around the $10,000 annual write-off limitation, Scott Dinwiddie of the IRS’s Income Tax and Accounting Division said on Friday.
Questions remain about the excess business loss rule
P.L. 115-97, informally known as the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA), added Sec. 461(l) and the phrase "excess business losses" to the Code. Little has been written about the excess business loss rule. Perhaps people believe it to be straightforward and not worthy of comment. However, IRS guidance is needed to determine items of business income, gains, losses, and deductions to arrive at the amount of excess business losses.
Court upholds IRS PTIN fees
The IRS has authority to charge a user fee for preparer taxpayer identification numbers (PTINs) a federal appeals court held on Friday, paving the way for the agency to reinstate the charges for obtaining and renewing a PTIN (Montrois, No. 17-5204 (D.C. Cir. 3/1/19)). A valid PTIN is required for anyone who prepares or assists in preparing a federal tax return for compensation. The IRS stopped charging a user fee for PTINs in 2017, after it lost a case in federal district court (Steele, 260...
Feds call Connecticut's statewide tolls proposal 'new territory'
Gusty winds peppered Gov. Ned Lamont with dust and occasional snow flurries Monday as he stood beneath the "mixmaster," the outmoded I-84 and Route 8 interchange undergoing a $152.9 million rehabilitation that will buy Connecticut time — putting off a far more expensive and disruptive replacement for another 25 years. Looming above him like a prehistoric, if badly rusting, octopus, the mixmaster provided a telegenic backdrop for the easiest part of Lamont's campaign to win approval of...
CT suit against Trump border wall seeks to protect National Guard funds
California, the lead state in the lawsuit that aims to block President Donald Trump from tapping military construction funds to build a border wall, has a lot at stake — nearly $820 million in projects Congress has approved for the state’s many military installations. Connecticut has much less on the table. Congress has appropriated less than $2 million in the 2019 federal budget to construct a deicing facility for Air National Guard planes and a vehicle maintenance shop at Bradley...

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