from the inbox:
U.S. Rep. Allyson Schwartz today urged Pennsylvanians to take advantage of the broad based tax cuts Congress and President Obama have enacted in the 111th Congress. These tax cuts are putting money in the hands of families and businesses across the country, injecting consumer demand into the economy and spurring business investment and job creation.
All totaled, Congress has enacted more than $800 billion in tax cuts since the beginning of 2009 when the President signed into law the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act. This law provided 95 percent of working Americans with one of the largest and fastest tax cuts in American history, the Making Work Pay Tax Credit.
As recently as yesterday, Congress passed with bipartisan support the Taxpayer Assistance Act of 2010, which reduced the burden on taxpayers while enhancing their protections. The legislation has more than a dozen provisions to ensure that the system is working for American taxpayers and businesses. It will make it easier for struggling taxpayers to enter into payment options with the IRS and will help businesses and nonprofits by relaxing the record keeping requirement for cell phones that they provide to their employees.
“As Americans file their 2009 income taxes today, they should know Congress’ tax cut record and the series of tax cuts they may qualify for this year,” Schwartz said. “For example, you can receive a tax benefit for attending college, making energy-saving home improvements, purchasing a home for the first time, or buying a new car. The work we have accomplished this year is moving America in a new direction, beyond prosperity for only a few and toward more broadly shared economic opportunity for all.”
Building on the 25 tax cuts included in the Recovery Act, Congress has enacted job-creating tax incentives to spur hiring of out-of-work Americans, strengthened small businesses with tax credits and accelerated write-offs so they can expand and hire. Most recently, we have put in place the largest health care tax cut in history, with the enactment of health insurance reform.
The result of these measures, tax refunds are already up 10 percent this year – pushing the average refund up to a record $3,000 per taxpayer.
Taxpayers in Pennsylvania and across the country can benefit from a variety of tax benefits, including:
* The Making Work Pay Tax Credit—95 percent of working families are already receiving the Recovery Act’s largest tax cut of $400 for an individual and $800 for married couples. Americans will continue to see these benefits in 2010.
* Tax Credits for College Expenses—More than four million additional students will be able to attend college thanks to this tax credit, which provides families and students up to $2,500 in tax savings under the American Opportunity Credit, as well as enhanced benefits under 529 college savings plans.
* First Time Homebuyer Tax Credit—First time homebuyers can get a credit of up to $8,000 for homes purchased by April 30, 2010 under this credit.
* Tax Credits for Energy Efficient Renovations—Taxpayers are eligible for up to $1,500 in tax credits for making energy-efficient improvements to their homes, such as adding insulation and installing energy efficient windows.
* Health Insurance Reform Tax Credit—Beginning this year, four million small businesses will be eligible for $40 billion in tax credits to help them offer health care coverage to their employees if they choose.
* Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment Act (HIRE Act)—More than 300,000 jobs will be created with a payroll tax holiday for businesses that hire unemployed workers and an income tax credit of $1,000 for businesses that retain these employees.