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Familiar bills live, die at committee deadline

The legislation that would have stopped the requirement that certain small businesses pay two months’ worth of sales and use taxes right before the end of the fiscal year is dead.

Tuesday was the first major deadline for bills to either make it out of the committees to which they were first assigned, or wait until next session.

The accelerated tax payment system requires that taxpayers that collect sales and use taxes and have an average monthly tax liability of at least $20,000 – which encompasses a lot of small businesses – pay June taxes by June 25, a week before a new fiscal year starts. Normally, those taxes are paid the following month. (For example, April taxes are paid on May 20.)

The Mississippi National Federation of Independent Businesses had supported raising that $20,000 threshold to at least $50,000, something that was supposed to happen due to legislation passed a few years ago, but has been delayed. Four bills that would have done that were filed; none made it past the committee deadline.

Several pieces of legislation that have died the last few sessions met the same fate this year  — among them, bills to require nursing homes to carry liability insurance and shifting the burden of proof from claimants to insurance companies in claims arising under all-perils policies.

Other bills that have gotten the attention of the business community fared better. Legislation to expand financial literacy classes to all high school grades made it. That legislation is one Treasurer Lynn Fitch’s priorities.

Secretary of State Delbert Hosemann’s collection of tax credit bills are still alive, though they face a later deadline because they’re revenue bills.  The same goes for bills that clarify how tax assessors calculate the tax liability for Section 42, or affordable rental, housing developments.

The first deadline for those bills is Feb. 27, when they must be passed out of their chamber, or die.

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  1. dspics@comcast.net
    February 7th, 2013 at 13:25 | #1

    So glad to hear about the financial literacy effort moving along.
    This could be a big difference-maker for students, and the whole state would benefit in the long run. Thanks to Lynn Fitch for championing this cause!

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