Bennet to Chair Bipartisan Finance Committee Working Group on Tax Reform

Work Group to Focus on Infrastructure, Energy, Community Development

One of Five Groups to Analyze Challenges of Tax Code, Develop Policy Recommendations for Comprehensive Tax Reform

Washington, DC - Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet today was named co-chair of the Senate Finance Committee's working group on infrastructure, community development and energy. Bennet will join Republican Senator Dean Heller of Nevada to examine and develop policy recommendations that could be packaged into a comprehensive tax reform bill. The working group is one of five launched today by Finance Committee Chairman Orrin Hatch (R-UT) and Ranking Member Ron Wyden (D-OR).

The working groups will analyze current tax law and examine policy trade-offs and available reform options within the group's designated topic areas. Each group will be co-chaired by one Republican and one Democrat member. The working group led by Bennet and Heller will examine tax policy related to infrastructure investment, including transportation, energy, and water projects. It will also look at tax provisions to help local communities boost economic development.

"Our nation tax code-which hasn't been reformed since I was in college-should reflect the realities of a 21st century economy," Bennet said. "It's time to break from the status quo and craft a tax code that will support entrepreneurs and innovators, which is where the job growth, wage growth, and economic growth are going to come from. This is going to be extremely difficult and will involve tough choices."

Since coming to the Senate, Bennet has introduced several proposals to improve the tax code for the energy industry and to boost infrastructure investments. He sponsored a bipartisan bill to put liquefied natural gas (LNG) on equal footing with diesel fuel under the federal highway excise tax. In the absence of energy tax reform, he has pushed to extend the wind energy production tax credit (PTC) that supports thousands of jobs in Colorado and across the country. He also introduced a bipartisan, bicameral bill to boost infrastructure investments through the creation of a national infrastructure bank to support loans and loan guarantees for states and local communities to move forward on major infrastructure projects. Bennet also joined Senator Heller to introduce a bipartisan bill that would allow more solar companies to benefit from the Investment Tax Credit (ITC).

Policy focus areas for the working groups include: 1) Individual Income Tax; 2) Business Income Tax; 3) Savings & Investment; 4) International Tax; and 5) Community Development, Infrastructure, and Energy.

Each of the bipartisan groups will work directly with the nonpartisan Joint Committee on Taxation (JCT) to produce an in-depth analysis of options and potential legislative solutions within its assigned area, with the goal of having one final comprehensive report featuring recommendations from each of the five categories completed by the end of May. The report recommendations, which will be delivered to Chairman Hatch and Ranking Member Wyden, will serve as a foundation for the development of bipartisan tax reform legislation.

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