A longtime supporter of comprehensive tax reform, Congressman Fred Upton, R-St. Joseph, praised today's unveiling of draft legislation by House Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp, R-Midland, to overhaul the nation's complex tax code.
"This proposal seeks to deliver the relief that Michigan families and employers have long awaited and deserve," said Upton. "The status quo is unfair and an obstacle to domestic job creation and economic growth. Tax reform will boost Michigan's working families struggling to get by, and getting rid of harmful provisions like the medical device tax that has caused jobs to be lost right in our community is a critical step forward. I commend Dave Camp for achieving this milestone in his pursuit to create a system that is simpler and fairer for all Americans."
American taxpayers spend more than 6 billion hours and $168 billion each year on tax return preparation, according to the Taxpayer Advocate Service. At nearly 4 million words long, most Americans believe the current tax code is working against them and having a harmful impact on the economy.
Among the tax reform plan's many provisions, the legislation would lower the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 25 percent, while eliminating many special deductions and loopholes. It would also condense the seven tax rate brackets for individuals into two rates: 10 percent for those below roughly $75,000 and 25 percent for those above that threshold, with a 10 percent surtax on earnings above $450,000 for joint filers.
In creating a pro-growth tax code, the draft bill would repeal the 2.3 percent excise tax on all U.S. sales of medical devices, which took effect on January 1, 2013, under the President's health care law. Upton is an original cosponsor of bipartisan, standalone legislation to permanently repeal the harmful tax which has already resulted in substantial employee layoffs at U.S. medical device manufacturers like Kalamazoo-based Stryker Corporation.
Congress last enacted tax reform legislation in 1986. Today's announcement is the culmination of three years of work by Camp and his committee, which consists of 30 congressional hearings, 11 bipartisan tax reform working groups, and a bipartisan nationwide tour led by Camp and former Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont.