Tax Relief, Tax Scrutiny | Tax Policy Center

Will taxing capital gains at death hurt farmers? Democratic lawmakers representing rural districts want assurances that owners of family farms and small businesses will be protected from President Biden’s proposal to tax at death capital gains exceeding $1 million. 

June will be appropriations month in the House. Appropriations Committee Chair Rosa DeLauro says her panel will mark up spending bills next month and expects the House to pass them in July.  

Property tax relief soon in Idaho. The legislature quickly approved property tax relief that Republican Governor Brad Little will soon sign. It caps local government budget growth at 8 percent annually, raises the homeowner’s property tax exemption from $100,000 to $125,000, and increases the tax exemption for businesses buying inventory, machinery, and equipment from $100,000 to $250,000. 

In Montana:  A new business equipment tax exemption. Republican Gov. Greg Gianforte signed an increase to $300,000 the tax exemption on business equipment. The bill is projected to exempt 4,000 businesses from taxes on equipment. Gianforte has not yet signed other tax  bills  that cut personal income taxes and capital gains taxes. Democratic legislative leaders want him to veto the measures.

Will  Massachusetts lawmakers pass a millionaires’ tax? Three years ago, the state’s supreme court struck down a ballot initiative to levy a new 4 percent tax on annual income over $1 million to fund public education and transportation. The reason: The measure combined two independent subjects of spending. Now, proponents of the measure, the Fair Share Amendment, want the legislature to pass it as a bill. Will lawmakers vote this summer? House Speaker Ron Mariano, a Democrat who recently decided to support the measure, said, “We have this or nothing, and it’s a difficult choice for legislators.”

New York State tax officials will take close looks at remote workers’ refund claims. The Wall Street Journal reports (paywall) that New York state tax officials are scrutinizing refund claims filed by nonresidents who have been working remotely instead of commuting to New. York during the Covid-19 pandemic. The Department of Taxation and Finance has provided refresher training to auditors about out-of-state filers. The department says nonresidents whose primary office is in New York state should consider days spent telecommuting as days worked in the state unless their employer has established a bona fide employer office at the telecommuter’s location.

For the latest tax news, subscribe to the Tax Policy Center’s Daily Deduction. Sign up here to have it delivered to your inbox weekdays at 8:00 am (Mondays only when Congress is in recess). We welcome tips on new research or other news. Email Renu Zaretsky at

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