Very few farm families pay estate taxes but almost all large-scale farmers are worried that changes in the tax code will increase their exposure to capital gains or estate taxes, said a Purdue University survey released on Tuesday. The poll was conducted before the White House said nearly all …
President Biden proposed stricter application of capital gains taxes, potentially generating billions of dollars in federal revenue, on Wednesday by restricting use of the decades-old "stepped-up basis" that reduces liability on inherited property. Although the White House said it would not increase taxes on heirs who want to keep the family farm running, the largest U.S. farm group was skeptical that the protection could be fashioned into law.
The $1.5 trillion tax-cut package unveiled by House Republicans would eliminate the estate tax – the most-hated tax in agriculture – in 2023, while allowing larger deductions for purchases of equipment, according to the Ways and Means Committee. Farm groups were muted in their comments as they assessed the 429-page bill.
The first overhaul of the tax code in three decades should result in a one-page tax return for most Americans, President Trump said in Missouri, while declaring that tax reform is the foundation of job growth. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said separately that the estate tax, a bugaboo of the farm sector, should be part of the overhaul expected to be a Republican priority in Congress this fall.
A coalition of small-government, anti-tax, and anti-waste groups says the 2018 farm law should abolish many of the subsidies now available to producers and "only provide risk-related assistance for uncontrollable natural events," such as major crop losses. "Farmers — especially those with operations with a million dollars or more in sales that account for most agricultural production — are more than capable of competing in the marketplace," say the 15 groups in a letter to lawmakers.
President Trump won election partly on his promise of tax reform, boosting the prospects for the first comprehensive overhaul of the tax code in three decades. Witnesses at a House Agriculture Committee hearing said any reform package must retain benefits now available to farmers, such as deducting interest paid on loans and use of cash accounting to calculate income.