April 22, 1986 |
The Reagan administration signaled Congress yesterday that it would be willing to accept higher excise taxes on consumers to finance lower income tax rates in the President's tax-revision plan. In testimony before the Senate Finance Committee, J. Roger Mentz, assistant treasury secretary for tax policy, said the administration "will entertain the possibility of selective increases in excise taxes in order to create a revenue-neutral tax reform package" - one that brings in the same amount of money as present law. Mentz offered no details about either the size of the increases or which taxes would be involved - although he implied that higher levies on alcoholic beverages, tobacco products and motor fuels would be acceptable to the administration.
August 29, 1987 |
Sen. John Heinz (R., Pa.) calls it "the sick tax. " The federal government levies an 8 percent tax on each flight of an aircraft that weighs more than 6,000 pounds. Because many emergency medical helicopters exceed that weight limit, hospitals are feeling the pinch. And so, ultimately, are consumers. Officials at the American Society of Hospital-Based Emergency Air Medical Services (ASHBEAMS) say that some of their members pay up to $80,000 a year in excise taxes. They argue that because the money goes into the federal airport trust fund, which awards airport maintenance grants, the hospital helicopters, which do not use airports or the air traffic control system, should not have to pay. Heinz sponsored legislation, passed by the Senate Finance Committee earlier this summer, that would exempt the medical helicopters from the tax, the same 8 percent levied on airline tickets.
October 1, 1995 |
For decades, hunters and anglers have provided most of the money used by state fish and game agencies to administer wildlife-conservation programs. They have done it by buying hunting and fishing licenses and by paying excise taxes on firearms and other equipment they use. Over the years, this revenue has paid for programs that primarily have benefited game species such as deer, wild turkeys and trout. Only a relatively small amount has been used to pay for programs specifically intended to benefit non-game animals.
February 15, 1987
"President Reagan has ordered more than 20 U.S. warships to move into the waters off Lebanon to serve as a warning to terrorists there," said a Feb. 5 article. The great majority of the people of Lebanon have no more to do with terrorism than the American people had to do with the U.S. invasion of Grenada. Bullying the Lebanese people by bringing a massive U.S. naval force to their shore, or worse, will not discourage the relatively small number of terrorists scattered among them.
April 5, 2013
EIGHTY years ago this Sunday, the federal government enacted a law that targets beer drinkers with a mean-spirited tax on every bottle, every glass, every sip they take. In the decades that have followed this ignominious date, the law has taken billions of dollars out of our pockets, killed jobs, thwarted brewery expansion and threatened the middle class. Beer lobbyists today describe the law as "devastating" and "regressive. " They say it jeopardizes the entire industry. Just another example of greedy tax-and-spend politicians, right?
March 20, 1986 |
Senate Finance Committee members yesterday began work on a tax-overhaul bill and fell almost immediately into a sharp dispute over a provision to prohibit businesses from deducting the excise taxes they pay. Only one of many items expected to produce friction in the committee, the excise-tax proposal involves now-deductible taxes paid by businesses on such things as gasoline, airline fares and tickets for entertainment and sports events....
April 9, 1986 |
Two popular retirement plans came under fire yesterday as Senate Finance Committee members writing a tax-revision bill grappled with proposals designed to make it harder for wealthy taxpayers to use the plans to avoid paying taxes. The proposals are aimed at recapturing some of the $15.9 billion in estimated revenues that the 401(k) and Individual Retirement Accounts programs will cost the U.S. Treasury in 1987. "We've found many pension programs are tilted toward higher-income employees," said Sen. Bob Packwood (R., Ore.)
November 29, 1987 |
Most taxpayers will not feel the bite of $9 billion in higher 1988 taxes mandated by the deficit-reduction accord. The extension of a 3 percent excise tax on all telephone calls is the only fee likely to hit most taxpayers directly. It is already in effect, but had been scheduled to expire Dec. 31. Extending it would yield $1.3 billion this year and $6.1 billion over three years, according to congressional tax documents. Otherwise, the $9 billion is expected to come from a vast assortment of small increases in low-profile taxes on corporations and upper-income taxpayers.
November 25, 1988 |
After years of continuing education for my husband and me, and gaining employment respectively as an account clerk and correspondence secretary, we retired several years ago as low low middle class. We fall into this category despite our efforts at independence and upward mobility because of the taxes and surtaxes placed upon our earnings. The U.S., we agree, is a great country to live in, but many flaws need to be addressed on all levels of government, if it is to reach its potential of greatness as envisioned by our forebearers.
April 4, 2002 |
We are approaching April 15, when people's checkbooks remind them that even if "taxes are the price we pay for a civilized society," it doesn't follow that the civilization we get is worth the taxes we are forced to pay. But this issue is hardly new. More than two centuries before our federal budget sped past the $2 trillion mark, those known as antifederalists warned us that the price we would have to pay for government would rise. Remember that as you struggle to understand the latest IRS forms, particularly as you write that check to the U. S. Treasury.