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On February 2, 2015, President Obama published his 2016 budget proposal.  It proclaims that “[a] simpler, fairer, and more efficient tax system is critical to achieving many of the President’s fiscal and economic goals.”  While some tax practitioners may debate the claim that the tax provisions embedded in the President’s budget proposal make the tax system simpler, it is a certainty that a significant number of tax practitioners will question the fairness of these provisions.

Charitable Deductions

As in the past, the President’s budget proposes that “wealthy millionaires” pay no less than 30% of their income in federal income taxes.  To facilitate accomplishing that goal, President Obama suggests these taxpayers be prevented from making charitable contributions to reduce their tax liability.  He states:  “…this proposal will act as a backstop to prevent high-income households from using tax preferences to reduce their total tax bills to less than what many middle class families pay.”

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Larry J. Brant
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Larry J. Brant is a Shareholder in Foster Garvey, a law firm based out of the Pacific Northwest, with offices in Seattle, Washington; Portland, Oregon; Washington, D.C.; New York, New York, Spokane, Washington; and Beijing, China. Mr. Brant practices in the Portland office. His practice focuses on tax, tax controversy and transactions. Mr. Brant is a past Chair of the Oregon State Bar Taxation Section. He was the long-term Chair of the Oregon Tax Institute, and is currently a member of the Board of Directors of the Portland Tax Forum. Mr. Brant has served as an adjunct professor, teaching corporate taxation, at Northwestern School of Law, Lewis and Clark College. He is an Expert Contributor to Thomson Reuters Checkpoint Catalyst. Mr. Brant is a Fellow in the American College of Tax Counsel. He publishes articles on numerous income tax issues, including Taxation of S Corporations, Reasonable Compensation, Circular 230, Worker Classification, IRC § 1031 Exchanges, Choice of Entity, Entity Tax Classification, and State and Local Taxation. Mr. Brant is a frequent lecturer at local, regional and national tax and business conferences for CPAs and attorneys. He was the 2015 Recipient of the Oregon State Bar Tax Section Award of Merit.

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