Bipartisanship can be hard to come by in Washington, but there are encouraging signs that Congress and the administration have heard the voice of reason when it comes to extending important tax measures that are set to expire. Democratic and Republican leaders have announced a tentative compromise that would extend the 2001 and 2003 tax cuts for two years to ensure American small businesses and families do not face a tax increase in the middle of the current economic downturn.
Throughout the debate, the community banking industry has done its part. ICBA and the nation’s community bankers have urged Congress to vote to extend current income tax rates across the board and address the estate tax and other expiring tax measures by the end of the year. In addition to ICBA’s Washington advocacy, countless community bankers have used ICBA’s customizable letter and tax information to make their voices heard in Congress.
While we need to learn more about the deal, the prospect for a compromise that avoids tax hikes offers a little more cheer this holiday season. However, Congress still must debate and act on any final agreement, so ICBA will continue working closely with lawmakers to ensure that the current promise for a deal is not a humbug.