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Congress Tax Reform Package Could Harm Poor, Warns Religious Development Group

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Written by Jubilee USA Network   
Thursday, 30 November 2017 10:10

As the Senate pushes tax reform, the head of a religious development group expressed concern over parts of the House and Senate proposals that could harm low income people in the United States and people in the developing world.

“Any final tax reform package should support and protect vulnerable communities. I’m concerned that portions of the current tax plans will harm poor populations,” said Eric LeCompte, Executive Director of Jubilee USA. “A final tax package should not shift greater tax burdens to the poor or constrict our budget from providing adequate foreign development assistance or disaster relief.”

The House and Senate will likely use the conference committee process to reconcile differences between the final House and Senate tax reform packages.

“Current tax reform legislation moves the US to a so-called territorial tax system that encourages the use of tax havens and permits corporations to avoid US taxes and taxes in developing countries,” noted LeCompte. “Such a plan has a human cost and negatively impacts poor people at home and abroad.”

Jubilee USA has worked with Congress for nearly two years on US financial policies regarding Puerto Rico. Portions of a final tax package could impact Puerto Rico and other US Territories according to LeCompte.

“As Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands are still struggling to recover from the aftermath of this hurricane season, they should not be subject to additional excise taxes that US states are not subject to,” stated LeCompte. “While Congress considers tax policies to promote jobs for Americans in the 50 States, those policies must also ensure that US citizens living in Puerto Rico and the Territories are treated the same. Puerto Rico and the US Territories will lose tens of thousands of jobs if Congress passes a final tax package with new excise taxes for the Territories.”

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