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By Andy Moceri, CPA

Recently, The American Institute of CPAs (AICPA) outlined its priorities for tax reform legislation, as a major change is expected to take place. The release of these priorities comes as Republicans are pushing to pass legislation that overhauls the tax code next year. Republicans believe that 2017 is the perfect time to pass a tax reform bill as they will control both houses of Congress, as well as the White House, with the new administration.

"The CPA profession prides itself on providing objective analysis of potential changes to our tax code and we again welcome the opportunity to lend expert input as the House and Senate consider tax reform" said Annette Nellen, chair of the AICPA Tax Executive Committee, in a news release.

The AICPA has stated that tax reform should "follow principles of good tax policy including equity, simplicity, minimum tax gap, transparency and economic growth and efficiency."

The AICPA believes that lawmakers should target specific issues in their legislation, such as lowering tax rates for businesses of all kinds, whether it be corporate or other types of businesses, repealing the alternative minimum tax (AMT), condensing and/or simplifying retirement savings provisions and making the communication process with the IRS more efficient for not just tax preparers, but taxpayers as well.

The Republican's "Better Way" tax blueprint is in line with the AICPA's recommendations. Part of the blueprint's agenda includes lowering the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 20 percent and the rate for all pass-through entities, partnerships and S corporations, to 25 percent. It does also ask for the repeal of the alternative minimum tax and to simplify the sometimes complex higher education tax benefits. It also suggests that the House Ways and Means Committee work to consolidate the retirement savings provisions.