Dear Friends,

As you know, the deadline for filing your taxes is April 15th. The past year has not been easy for many North Mississippians. That’s why I’ve worked hard to implement significant tax relief – including one of the largest middle-class tax cuts in American history – to help uplift First District families.

Below is a list of tax relief measures I’ve supported over the past year.

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, which includes:

The “Making Work Pay” tax credit – one of the largest middle-class tax cuts in American history – which provides a refundable tax credit for 2009 and 2010 of up to $400 for working individuals and $800 for married taxpayers filing joint returns. The tax credit benefits 95% of American workers, and an estimated one million Mississippi taxpayers.

A capital gains tax cut similar to the Invest in Small Business Act that I introduced last July to encourage investment in small businesses.

A new, partially refundable $2,500 college tax credit for families that will benefit an estimated 63,000 students in Mississippi, according to the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP).

The $8,000 first-time homebuyer tax credit, which was extended for five months through April 30, 2010. I was proud to successfully lead the effort in the House of Representatives to extend this credit.

Additional tax relief provisions included in the Recovery Act can be found by visiting the IRS’s Recovery Act Information Center.
The Permanent Estate Tax Relief for Families, Farmers, and Small Business Act:
Permanently extends the current estate tax exemption amount and maximum rate. The bill will keep the tax at its current exemption level – $3.5 million for individuals and $7 million for married couples – and maintain the maximum 45% rate. Without this fix, the exemption amount would be much lower by 2011 and the rate would increase by 10%. I introduced a bill earlier this year to reduce the estate tax rate by 5% and increase the exclusion amount by $500,000.
The Tax Extenders Act of 2009:
Extends tax relief provisions for hard-working Americans and businesses to help spur job growth. The legislation will extend the R&D tax credit for nearly 11,000 corporations, provide up to 30 million homeowners with property tax relief, and help 4.5 million families better afford college with a tuition deduction.

A full summary of all the tax provisions in the bill can be found on the Ways & Means Committee website by clicking here.
The Hiring Incentives to Restore Employment (HIRE) Act:
Provides incentives for hiring and retaining new employees, including a payroll tax holiday for businesses that hire unemployed workers and an income tax credit of $1,000 for businesses that retain these employees. According to economist Mark Zandi of Moody’s, these incentives will create some 300,000 jobs.

Includes better payment options for state and local infrastructure projects. I previously introduced a bill to make it easier for states to take up school construction projects. The HIRE Act includes this language. Specifically, state and local governments will be able to issue special purpose tax credit bonds for school construction, energy conservation, and renewable energy. This is similar to the Build America Bond direct payment option that has been very successful in helping State and local governments access the credit market.
As always, please continue to keep me informed about your opinions and concerns by phone at (202) 225-4306 or by visiting my website at