Two major agribusiness groups are scrambling to fix a flaw in the new tax law that offers a big tax deduction to farmers who sell their crops through cooperatives but not when they deal with privately owned merchants. The flaw was created when lawmakers tried to replicate the benefits to farmes from a provision of the old tax code, known as Section 199, that was eliminated by the new law.
With judges split 5-2, the Pennsylvania Comonwealth Court upheld Philadelphia's 1.5-cent-an-ounce tax on sweetened beverages, the second win in court by the city, said Philadelphia Magazine. "Still, the ruling doesn’t conclude the soda tax war," said the magazine, because the American Beverage Association and local businesses could appeal to the state Supreme Court.
The nation’s first soda tax, Berkeley, California’s one-cent-per-ounce levy, hasn’t impacted retail businesses, but it has reduced soda purchases by 9.6 percent, says a new study by the University of North Carolina.
The author of a UN report on food production and the environment says governments should tax meat production to slow the global rise in consumption and the accompanying environmental damage, says the Guardian. "If we are all to copy-cat the way in which we feed ourselves in North America or Europe, the planet would be in deep trouble," said Maarten Hajer, a member of the International Resource Panel.
Michigan Republican Dave Camp, chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, said he will retire at the end of this term.
The tax reform package unveiled on Wednesday by House Ways and Means chairman Dave Camp includes an industry-backed plan for higher fuel taxes to pay for improvements to U.S. inland locks, dams and waterways.