WHEREAS, the federal tax code has a tremendous impact on the well being of working families, small businesses, and the vitality of cities, and

WHEREAS, the federal tax code includes significant incentives and assistance for Americans from anti-poverty measures to childcare to homeownership to business development, and

WHEREAS, the complexity of the tax code often prevents many people, especially working families from getting the relief to which they are entitled, and

WHEREAS, simplifying the over 50 pages of instructions for the successful EITC, which raises millions of working families out of poverty and helps provide incentive to work, and moderating the items steep cliffs that unduly remove benefits and discourage work would greatly improve the simplicity and efficacy of a key tax item for working families, and

WHEREAS, despite recent improvements the definition of a child still changes from one tax item to the next, being different for the EITC, the Child and Dependant Care Credit, head of household, dependant exemption and further improving the uniformity would greatly aid all tax filers more easily apply for the relief to which they are entitled, and

WHEREAS, there are items in the federal tax code which make arbitrary distinctions that unfairly provide relief in some circumstances but not in others, and

WHEREAS, expanding the Child and Dependant Care Credit to children up to 18 years old will end an arbitrary and unfair distinction in the tax code and help provide child care and beneficial after-school activities that are essential to enable families to work, and

WHEREAS, homeownership is an important part of the American Dream which should be available to all, and expanding the access of homeownership tax items that greatly favor wealthier individuals, would better help low- and middle-income families most in need for homeownership assistance, and

WHEREAS, many tax items have strong goals, but do not actually succeed in providing the relief for which they are intended, and

WHEREAS, there is a growing crisis in the cost of healthcare impacting businesses, families and government whose solution is likely to require and must take into account the many ways taxes impact health insurance coverage, and

WHEREAS, there is a growing need for Americans to increase their savings and plan for their retirement and the Savers Credit is the only tax item targeted to low-income families that aids them in saving for their retirement, and

WHEREAS, Congress is again beginning to discuss the elements of comprehensive tax reform. NOW, THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED, that The U. S. Conference of Mayors urges Congress to insure that any tax reform proposal makes the tax system less complicated, more fair and more efficient;

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that tax reform should provide significant benefit to working families and small businesses in our communities;

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED, that tax reform initiatives should explore ways to use federal tax policy to encourage the rebuilding of our urban infrastructure, providing further benefit to working families and small businesses in our communities.

2005 The U.S. Conference of Mayors
Tom Cochran, Executive Director
1620 Eye Street, NW, Washington, DC 20006
Tel. 202.293.7330 ~ Fax 202.293.2352