Budget Passage Critical for Tax Reform

Podcast / Newsline October 12, 2017

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Congress must pass a budget in order to consider tax reform. Micheal Clements has more.

Clements: The House has passed its budget bill, and the Senate has passed its version out of committee. The two chambers must come together to iron out difference to provide tax relief to farmers and ranchers once the Senate bill moves forward. American Farm Bureau Federation congressional relations director RJ Karney says a budget must be finished to allow tax reform to take place.

Karney: The House and Senate need to pass a budget resolution that would allow the tax writing committees to develop a tax reform package that could pass though reconciliation. So, the reason a budget resolution is so important this year is in order for there to be tax reform: the House and Senate must pass a budget resolution.

Clements: Karney says there are differences in the House and Senate versions of the bill that must be addressed.

Karney: The House budget includes reconciliation instructions for the Agriculture Committee to cut $10 billion over a 10-year period from nutrition programs. On tax reform, the House wants a deficit neutral tax reform. The Senate proposal right now has no reconciliation instructions for the Agriculture Committee. In regards to tax reform, the Senate allows for a bill that adds up to $1.5 trillion to the deficit.

Clements: The Senate will consider its budget proposal next week when lawmakers return from recess. Once passed and both the House and Senate can agree on merging the two versions, the budget will become final, without the need of approval by the president.

Karney: Budget resolutions do not go to the president. However, any reconciliation bill, in this case tax reform, would need to pass both chambers and go to the president for his signature. So, any actual legislation from the resolution does need to get his signature.

Clements: Micheal Clements, Washington.

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