WASHINGTON – Without a doubt, tax day is one of the most dreaded days of the year.
Nothing strikes fear in your heart quite like interacting with the IRS. In fact, the Tax Foundation estimated that Americans in 2016 spent nearly 9 billion hours just trying to comply with our overly complicated and burdensome tax code.
While this year’s tax day was no different, the good news is it was the last filing season under this antiquated tax structure. Thanks to the recent enactment of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, there are wide-ranging improvements to the tax code that you’ll begin to see this time next year. This includes a nearly doubled standard deduction, which has increased to $12,000 from $6,350 for individuals and to $24,000 from $12,700 for married couples.
We’ve also cut rates across the board to institute a fairer and flatter tax system so that more of your money will be taxed at lower rates — regardless of your bracket.
The good news doesn’t stop there, though. Back in February of this year, you might have noticed an increase in your paycheck. This is because of lower federal withholding rates, which means more money in your pocket for groceries, car payments and other items your family needs. You – and not the government – know how best to spend your money, and I’m proud that this bill empowers everyday Americans to make those choices for themselves.
There’s also been explosive economic growth reaching every corner of the country. Company after company nationwide has doled out bonuses and increased benefits, including Georgia-based businesses like Aflac and Home Depot. In our own backyard, companies like Nisshinbo Automotive Manufacturing, Bridgestone Sports, Legacy Housing LTD and NIBCO Inc. – just to name a few – are reaping the benefits of this historic legislation, and these are being passed along to American workers and consumers.
While I remain a strong supporter of the FairTax, which would replace the federal income tax with a national consumption tax, the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act is a big step in the right direction toward simplifying the tax code and decreasing government involvement in how and where we spend our hard-earned cash. Come next April 15, most people will be paying less money and spending less time on their taxes, and that’s a real win in my book.Jody Hice, a Republican from Greensboro, represents Georgia’s 10th District in Congress. Email: hice.house.gov.