"Could there be a dumber tax than this where the cost of compliance equals the amount of money that the government collects from this?," Congressman Roscoe Bartlett asked at a hearing today by the Subcommittee on Economic Growth, Tax and Capital Access of the House Small Business Committee about "Planning for the Death Tax: Can Small Businesses Survive?" Congressman Bartlett emphasized, "I support repealing the death tax, but there aren't enough votes in the Congress for that to happen. However, all of us privileged to serve in the Congress shouldn't let our perfect preferences prevent us from improving what we all find unacceptable. That is why I urge my colleagues to carefully consider a revenue neutral proposal by Jack Fitzgerald and ASSET that would reduce the economic damage to the United States from the destructive effects of the estate tax on America's small businesses." Congressman Bartlett is a senior member of the House Small Business Committee.
Congressman Bartlett said, "The current structure of the estate tax forces the diversion of time and money by America's smartest small business owners when they're alive and the sale of many family-owned businesses, farms and ranches when they die. The estate tax kills jobs in our communities and destroys families' dreams of building on the success of previous generations. During the hearing, Congressman Bartlett noted, "The case for tax reform is dramatically illustrated by reviewing the data cited by the Joint Economic Committee in May of 2006. And what they found generally was that the cost of compliance was just about equal to the revenues the federal government collected from this."
Congressman Bartlett took note during the hearing of testimony submitted for the record by Mr. Jack Fitzgerald, owner of Fitz Auto Mall dealerships, and founder of Americans Standing for the Simplification of the Estate Tax (ASSET). Congressman Bartlett said, "I commend Jack Fitzgerald for studying this issue very closely and founding ASSET to develop proactive and innovative thinking to find common sense alternatives to the current estate tax that will support rather than cripple America's family-owned businesses."