Comprehensive tax reform is the top priority of the congressional tax-writing committees this year. In continuation of several years of work on this issue, the House Ways and Means Committee recently unveiled the next stage of the tax reform process: bipartisan working groups that will aggregate stakeholder input and identify major issues for tax reform. These working groups present a critical opportunity to engage with the Committee—and create a big risk for businesses that sit on the sidelines.
So what are the tax reform working groups, and how do they operate?
What are the working groups? There are 11 working groups dedicated to tackling different substantive areas of the Tax Code (described below). The goal of the working groups is to report issues and questions that the Committee should address in comprehensive tax reform. Each working group is essentially on a fact-finding mission. It is important to note that the working groups will not make specific policy recommendations to the Committee.
How do the working groups operate? Ways and Means has given the working groups a great deal of latitude in how they operate and interact with the public. The chair and vice chair of each working group may provide further procedures relative to each respective group. For example, some groups may release a list of questions or issues about which they are particularly interested in receiving comments and input. We anticipate that these inquiries will be posted on the Ways and Means Committee website.
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