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Legislative update: Ways and Means advances reconciliation legislation

Ways and Means advances reconciliation legislation

The U.S. House Committee on Ways and Means yesterday evening voted 25-18 to advance the elements of reconciliation within its jurisdiction to the House Budget Committee.

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Read TaxNewsFlash for analysis of the bill as originally unveiled by Chairman Neal (D-MA).

The committee adopted a Chairman’s amendment, which contained modifications related to the treatment of U.S. territories under certain provisions of the bill, as well as modifications to the bill’s provisions addressing multiemployer and community newspaper pension plans.

What’s next?

The Ways and Means portion of the reconciliation bill will now be transmitted to the House Budget Committee. The Budget Committee will combine the Ways and Means passed legislation with other legislation approved by other House committees to produce a reconciliation bill for consideration by the full House of Representatives. The House could consider by the end of February.

Budget reconciliation

Budget reconciliation is a process under which spending and revenue legislation (including tax measures) is not subject to potential Senate filibuster, and thus may be passed by a simple majority vote in the Senate. To retain the protection from a Senate filibuster that the reconciliation rules provide, provisions in the legislation being considered under the budget resolution must meet a number of complex requirements. Any senator can raise a point of order against any provision that does not meet these requirements.

The ability to use these rules was “unlocked” when the House and Senate agreed to a budget resolution for FY 2021 on February 5, 2021. The budget resolution permits the reconciliation bill produced pursuant to its instructions to increase the deficit by a maximum of $1.9 trillion over the 10-year budget window.

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