Beef Buzz News
Woodall Expects Tax Extenders in Lame DuckMon, 17 Nov 2014 13:01:54 CST
The National Cattlemen's Beef Association is optimistic Congress will make some progress on tax reform during the lame duck session. NCBA Vice President Government Affairs Colin Woodall said there were a lot of provision that expired at the end of 2013 that Congress has not been able to reauthorize, including section 179 and bonus depreciation that farmers and ranchers utilize.
"We have heard we will probably get a two year extension, so one year would be actually making all this retroactive for 2014 and then in extension into 2015, so that's good news," Woodall said. "We're excited about that because it does put it right in the middle of a new Congress. We're thinking a Republican controlled Senate we'll have a chance to actually do real tax reform and hopefully get these made permanent."
Radio Oklahoma Network Farm Director Ron Hays interviewed Woodall at the recent National Association of Farm Broadcasting Convention in Kansas City. Click or tap on the LISTEN BAR below to listen to the full Beef Buzz feature.
When Senators and Congressmen return to Washington DC after Thanksgiving, one of their key priorities to address will be passing a budget. Woodall said Congress looks to address the budget in a couple different ways as Congress could pass a continuing resolution and keep the funding levels they have right now and extend them for one or two months or Congress could pass an Omnibus Appropriations package.
"We have heard that both of them are an option right now," Woodall said. "We know staff are working on both of them as potential options, so we are just going to be prepared to see either one of these."
The agricultural community continues to watch what happen with the 'Waters of the US' proposed rule from the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers. Woodall said it is possible 'WOTUS' could be added to a budget proposal.
"Especially when you look at the efforts we've had to try to defund the 'Water of the US' proposal," Woodall said. "I think there is going to be a lot of pressure from Democrats and Republicans alike to put that in the Omnibus package. We're excited about the hopes of just finally shutting this down."
The public comment period through the Federal Register ended on Friday, November 14th. With thousands of comments it will take EPA a while to review those comments, giving Congress time to react. Woodall said they are also hopeful US Senator Jim Inhofe of Oklahoma will step in.
"Senator Inhofe being the new chairman of the Environment Public Works Committee this is a top priority for him," Woodall. "He has said he is going to do everything to keep this from being implemented."
Woodall said that is the best outcome right now is to keep the WOTUS rule from being implemented. He said the defunding would make that happen. After that he would expect the new Congress to pass some legislation to keep the WOTUS rule from moving forward.
"It's a multi-step project right now," Woodall said. "First of all we just need to slow 'em down, then we can ultimately just kill it out cold."
In the meantime, EPA will be taking a look at those comments on the proposal. Woodall said if EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy is serious on moving a rule forward the only she can do that is by giving a serious consideration to all the comments submitted.
"There's probably going to be over a half a million comments that ultimately get submitted on thing and she has to make sure that she is showing that she is listening and she's making changes," Woodall said. "Now we don't think any of the changes are going to be enough to satisfy us, but if she completely blows off those comments it just gives even more ammunition to our friends in Congress to shut her down."
The Beef Buzz is a regular feature heard on radio stations around the region on the Radio Oklahoma Network- but is also a regular audio feature found on this website as well. Click on the LISTEN BAR below for today's show- and check out our archives for older Beef Buzz shows covering the gamut of the beef cattle industry today.
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