The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) has taken action related to the federal tax bill. On January 3, the IURC issued an order initiating an investigation of the impact of the newly-signed federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act on investor-owned utilities in the state.
The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which was signed into law by President Donald Trump on December 22, 2017, went into effect January 1 and contains provisions reducing the corporate tax rate of 35% to 21% and revising the federal tax structure.
The IURC order states, “The commission recognizes that the approved tax reform will create benefits for utility customers because of the reduced federal tax burden on respondents (investor-owned utilities). … Accordingly, the purpose of this investigation is to review and consider the impacts from the Act and how any resulting benefits should be realized by customers.”
The IURC is encouraging comments from stakeholders and consumers. The public may provide comments to the Indiana Office of Utility Consumer, the state agency that represents the public before the commission. Comments may be submitted online at www.in.gov/oucc/2361.htm.
Resource: Greg Ellis at (317) 264-6881 or email: [email protected]
On Thursday, U.S. Senators Todd Young (R-Ind.) and Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) introduced legislation to increase oversight of taxpayer dollars spent by federal agencies. The Good Accounting Obligation in Government (GAO-IG) Act requires federal agencies to provide annual reports to Congress on the status of implementing recommendations from the Office of Inspector General (IG) and the Government Accountability Office (GAO).
As of 2016, there were more than 15,000 open and unimplemented federal agency recommendations from the IG, with a potential savings of $87 billion. Currently, GAO has over 8,000 open federal agency recommendations. For years, federal agencies have neglected to act on these recommendations. The GAO-IG Act requires agencies to report on the status of such recommendations as part of their annual budget justification. This includes providing a timeline for implementation of outstanding recommendations, or providing justification for not implementing the recommendations.
“This bipartisan bill will help make our federal government more accountable and save taxpayer dollars – two things Hoosiers want,” said Young. “Ensuring Congress has the information necessary to conduct effective oversight will lead to increased transparency for federal agencies and better service to taxpayers.”
“I’m glad to partner with Senator Young on a bill that gives Congress a powerful tool to hold agencies accountable and make sure they are working on behalf of American families,” said Warren. “This bipartisan bill will make our government more transparent and effective – and save taxpayers real money.”
The GAO-IG Act expands on legislation previously introduced by Young that prescribes the same accountability measures to the U.S. Department of State, the U.S. Department of Defense and the U.S. Department of Education.
Resource: Caryl Auslander at (317) 264-6880 or email: [email protected]