The American Institute of Architects (AIA) announced it was disappointed by the Senate Finance Committee's proposal for reforming the tax code. As the Committee marks up its legislation, the AIA noted that the proposal, like its companion piece in the House, still penalizes professional services companies, including architecture firms, organized as pass-through entities,which in effect raises their taxes. While the Senate's proposal retains the Historic Tax Credit, it severely curtails its utility. The current 10% credit for pre-1936 structures is repealed, while the current 20% credit for certified historic structures is halved. This is an improvement on the House Ways & Means Committee proposal, but would still have a deeply chilling effect on historic rehabilitation projects. The Senate bill also eliminates tax incentives for energy efficient buildings.
"Congress still has much to do if tax reforms are going to work for America's communities and the architects who serve them," said Thomas Vonier, AIA 2017 president. "The Senate Finance Committee draft shows marginal improvements on the House Ways & Means Committee proposal from early November. [But] there are other real issues. Tax incentives for energy efficient design and construction are eliminated, despite a great record of producing buildings that are much cleaner and less expensive to operate. Also, like the House proposal, the Senate draft excludes architects and other small business service professions from lowered tax rates."
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