Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks

Representing the 5th District of Indiana
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Americans Will Soon Keep More of Their Paychecks: Historic Tax Cuts Pass the House of Representatives

Dec 19, 2017
News Releases

WATCH Brooks’ advocate for tax reform on behalf of Fifth District Hoosiers on the House Floor earlier today, here.

WASHINGTON, DC – Congresswoman Susan W. Brooks (R-IN05) issued the following statement regarding the House's final passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act conference report:

 “Today is a monumental day for our country. For the first time in 31 years, we’ve simplified the tax code and passed significant tax cuts to benefit American families, workers and businesses.

“I believe our communities thrive when our colleagues, neighbors, friends and loved ones have the freedom to pursue their dreams. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is family focused and allows taxpayers to plan for their futures. It will lower the tax burden for many individuals and families in Indiana so Hoosiers can keep more of their hard-earned money.

“We’ve provided unprecedented tax relief for American families by eliminating the ‘marriage penalty,’ increasing the child tax credit from $1,000 to $2,000 per child, and expanding the medical expenses deduction for those who face high medical bills.”

“Our bill improves saving opportunities for education by allowing families to use 529 accounts to save for elementary, secondary and higher education. This bill does not tax graduate students on any reduced or free tuition they may receive from their institution.

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is about encouraging the establishment and expansion of American small businesses. It allows for immediate expensing of new equipment to grow and improve their operations and provides a 20 percent deduction on pass-through businesses. Small businesses and start-up companies need the lower tax rates this bill delivers in order to thrive and prosper so they can create jobs, raise wages and grow our economy.

 “Settling for the status-quo is not an option. I am proud of my vote today that will help provide security for families and small businesses across the nation.”

For individuals and families, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act:

  • Significantly increases the standard deduction to $12,000 for individuals and $24,000 for married couples in order to protect roughly double the amount of what you earn each year from taxes;
  • Retains popular retirement savings options such as 401(k)s and Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs) so Americans can continue to save for their future
  • Improves savings vehicles for education by allowing families to use 529 accounts to save for elementary, secondary and higher education;
  • Provides support for graduate students by continuing to exempt the value of reduced tuition from taxes;
  • Expands the Child Tax Credit from $1,000 to $2,000 for single filers and married couples to help parents with the cost of raising children;
  • Preserves the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit to help families care for their children and older dependents;
  • Preserves the Adoption Tax Credit so parents can continue to receive additional tax relief as they open their hearts and homes to an adopted child;
  • Provides relief for Americans with expensive medical bills by expanding the medical expense deduction for 2017 and 2018 for medical expenses; and
  • Continues and expands the deduction for charitable contributions so people can continue to donate to their local church, charity, or community organization.

For job creators, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act:

  • Retains the low-income housing tax credit that encourages businesses to invest in affordable housing so families, individuals, and seniors can find a safe and comfortable place to call home;
  • Prevents American jobs, headquarters, and research from moving overseas by eliminating incentives that now reward companies for shifting jobs, profits, and manufacturing plants abroad;
  • Preserves the Research & Development Tax Credit that encourages our businesses and workers to develop cutting-edge “Made in America” products and services;
  • Modernizes our international tax system so America’s global businesses will no longer be held back by an outdated “worldwide” tax system that results in double taxation for many of our nation’s job creators; and
  • Retains the tax-preferred status of private-activity bonds that are used to finance valuable infrastructure projects.

Brooks, along with 31 of her colleagues, advocated on behalf of graduate students and sent two letters to House and Senate leadership during the conference committee meetings, urging the leaders from both chambers to retain the income exclusion for graduate tuition waivers and university employee tuition waivers in the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. Fortunately, both provisions were retained in the final bill and allow graduate students and university employees to continue to receive tuition reductions without having it count as income.

Brooks also urged leaders in the House and Senate leadership through another letter, along with 39 of her colleagues, to support the inclusion of Private Activity Bond interest deductibility. The loss of this provision would have effectively ended the supply of affordable housing construction across the country and severely handicapped the ability of states and localities to continue to fund critical infrastructure and community improvements. Brooks is proud the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that passed the House today includes the Private Activity Bond interest deductibility.

For more policy highlights of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, click here.