John Kartch

CNN on GOP Tax Cuts: "The facts are, most Americans got a tax cut."

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Posted by John Kartch on Tuesday, July 30th, 2019, 7:00 PM PERMALINK

Tonight in Detroit, Democrat presidential candidates will not be truthful about the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. But even left-leaning and establishment media outlets such as debate host CNN have confirmed the good news arising from the tax cuts, enacted by the Republican congress and President Trump:


So if Bernie Sanders or Elizabeth Warren fib about the tax cuts tonight during the debate, the CNN hosts have everything they need to rebut them.


 

Photo Credit: salva1745/Flickr


Michigan Examples of Tax Reform Good News

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Posted by John Kartch on Tuesday, July 30th, 2019, 3:15 PM PERMALINK

The 2020 Democrat presidential candidates will trash the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act during the CNN debates this week. Let's look at how the GOP tax cuts have helped Michigan, site of the debates.

Thanks to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act:

24.7% tax cut: Michiganders received a 24.7% tax cut on average, according to a report from H&R Block. Every income group in every Michigan congressional district saw a tax cut.

Doubled child tax credit: 647,610 Michigan households are benefiting from the TCJA’s doubling of the child tax credit.

Standard deduction: At least 3,463,240 Michigan households are benefiting from the TCJA’s doubling of the standard deduction.

Obamacare individual mandate tax relief: 147,340 Michigan households are no longer stuck paying the much-loathed Obamacare individual mandate tax, thanks to the TCJA's elimination of this penalty. 82% of Michigan households hit with this tax made less than $50,000 per year.

Lower utility bills: As a direct result of the TCJA’s corporate rate cut, Michiganders are paying lower utility bills. Lower electric, water, and gas bills help households each month, and also help small businesses operating on slim profit margins. Michigan examples of utilities passing on tax savings to customers include – but are not limited to:

In their own words, learn how the tax cuts have helped Michigan businesses of all sizes: Thanks to the TCJA’s corporate tax rate cut – from 35 percent to 21 percent – and the TCJA’s 20 percent tax cut for small businesses, employers of all sizes are hiring new workers, expanding operations, upgrading equipment, and increasing pay and benefits:

Blackrocks Brewery (Marquette, Michigan) – Reinvesting tax savings into equipment and personnel:

Blackrocks Brewery in Marquette, Mich. is already working on expanding its operations thanks to the new tax law, said David Manson, co-founder and ambassador of fermentology at the brewery. His brewery is reinvesting the money in equipment and personnel, and looking which he hopes will help get his beer on more store shelves. Blackrocks has an American Brown Ale that sells for $8.99 per six-pack and a porter that’s $9.99 for a six-pack.

“This will allow us to get over the hump of the high demand in our state, and we probably wouldn’t necessarily be able to do it without that tax break,” he said. “This will allow us to put up a fighting chance to hold our own.” April 26, 2018 MarketWatch article excerpt

ITC Holdings Corporation (Novi, Michigan) – the utility will pass tax reform savings to its customers:

ITC Holdings Corp. (ITC), the nation's largest independent electricity transmission company, today announced it is reducing its customer rates as a result of the lower federal corporate income tax rate the company received under the Tax Cuts & Jobs Act of 2017.

ITC's wholesale electricity customers throughout the Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO) region will see an 8-to-10 percent reduction in transmission rates, retroactive to January 1, 2018, beginning with bills for services provided in March. A similar reduction will be made to ITC's formula rate in the Southwest Power Pool region for future periods, effective back to January 1, 2018. – April 2, 2018 ITC Holdings Corporation article excerpt

Mill Steel Company (Grand Rapids, Michigan) – $1,000 bonuses for 400 full-time associates:

Mill Steel Co., one of the nation's largest distributors of flat-rolled carbon steel, is pleased to award a $1,000 bonus to all 400 of its full-time associates following the tax cut passed by Congress and signed by President Trump.

Mill Steel announced this morning that all full-time associates across its nine operations nationwide, no matter each individual's seniority, will receive a one-time bonus from the recent tax overhaul that reduces corporate tax rates. – Feb. 8 2018, Mill Steel Company press release excerpt

Gray Skies Distillery (Grand Rapids, Michigan) -- Expanding production:

Gray Skies has been in business for around two and a half years and has recently been able to expand production because of one specific aspect of the GOP tax law. It's called the Craft Beverage Modernization and Tax Reform Act, which was an amendment to the big picture bill Trump signed into law in December.

There's a lot to the law, but here's why it matters to Gray Skies and other distilleries like it: excise taxes are much, much lower for them now. 80% lower to be exact.

"The instant a drop of alcohol is produced, tax is owed on that," said Steve Vander Pol, who co-founded Gray Skies and serves as the head distiller.

The law reduces excise taxes on producers from $13.50 per proof gallon for the first 100,000 gallons produced to $2.70 per proof gallon.

"We're talking thousands of dollars every quarter that we're saving," Vander Pol said, "and obviously for someone on this sized scale to write a check that's reduced by 80% is pivotal. It's been huge for us." - June 4, 2018, WZZM article excerpt

Upper Peninsula Power Company (Marquette, Michigan) – the utility will pass tax reform savings to its customers:

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) was passed into law at the end of 2017, effectively lowering corporate tax rates from 35 percent to 21 percent. Upper Peninsula Power Company (UPPCO) is requesting approval of a proposal that would pass along the savings attributable to the TCJA to its customers. UPPCO’s proposal was filed with the Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) on March 30th as part of the process that is required by the state for determining how the benefits of the TCJA are to be credited to the utility’s customers.

“Under our plan, a typical residential customer consuming 500 kilowatt hours per month will see a reduction of approximately $1.30 on their monthly bills,” said Brett French, Vice-President of Business Development and Communications. “This is in addition to approximately $7 in monthly savings currently being seen by a typical residential customer because of the steps we implemented in January. We anticipate our customers will begin to see the additional savings later this summer after the MPSC approves our plan.” – April 2, 2018 WLUC News article excerpt

 

SpartanNash (Grand Rapids, Michigan) – Bonuses and pay increases:

A locally based grocery store chain plans to re-invest half of its savings from federal tax reform into employee compensation and one of its brands.

David Staples, the CEO of Byron Center-based SpartanNash, which is also a food distributor, said in a conference call to investors yesterday the company will issue bonuses, raise wages and invest in employee training in the first quarter of 2018.

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SpartanNash spokesperson Meredith Gremel said the company does not plan to disclose the total dollar amount of the bonuses.

The bonus amounts will vary depending on the employee’s position and market, as will the wage increases, Gremel said. She noted those in entry-level roles or just beyond will benefit the most.”— Feb. 23 2018, Grand Rapids Business Journal article excerpts

Renaissance Global Logistics (Detroit, Michigan) – Tax reform bonuses:

“Tax reform helped Renaissance Global Logistics, headquartered in Detroit, give bonuses to my employees. Nancy Pelosi call these bonuses ‘crumbs’ and that’s disrespectful. I would ask Nancy Pelosi to come to Detroit to ask my employees what they thought of the bonuses. As an employer, it was rewarding to be able to give them out. Tax reform gives small businesses like mine the chance to reinvest into our workforce.” – John James, CEO of Renaissance Global Logistics, Feb. 22, 2018

Land & Co. (Wyoming, Michigan) -- $1,000 bonuses for full-time employees; $500 bonuses for part-time employees; $250 bonuses for seasonal workers:

Land & Co., which operates 19 apartment communities in West Michigan, announced it will give its employees a special bonus of up to $1,000 in response the federal tax cut legislation signed recently by President Donald Trump.

"Land & Co. believes the Trump Tax Cut has generated a more optimistic vision for the future of business in West Michigan and the United States of America and wants their wonderful employees to be a part of and share in that vision," the company said in a statement attributed to its owners, Roger Lucas and Dan Hibma on Monday, Feb. 5.

Land & Co.'s 151 full-time employees will each get $1,000; its 17 part-time workers will get $500 and its nine seasonal workers will each get $250. – Feb. 5, 2018 Mlive.com article excerpt

Penske Automotive Group (Bloomfield Hills, Michigan) – Increased 401(k) contributions:

Penske Automotive Group, Inc. (NYSE: PAG), an international transportation      services company, announced today that it has enhanced the company's U.S.        401(k) savings plan by increasing company matching contributions from 1.5% to  2.5% of eligible contributions, representing an increase of 67%.  The increase  will provide a recurring, annual benefit to our employees.

"The recently enacted tax reform positively impacts our business, presenting us with even greater opportunities to pursue our strategic initiatives, invest in our employees and improve shareholder value," said Penske Automotive Group Chairman Roger S. Penske – Jan. 31, 2018 Penske Automotive Group press release

U.S. Special Delivery (Iron Mountain, Michigan) – $1,000 bonuses:

With the recent tax reform, plenty of businesses got a big tax cut. That included Upper Peninsula–based U.S. Special Delivery, who got a little bit more spending money for the year, thanks to that tax cut.

“That was a major reason we were able to do this,” said U.S. Special Delivery President Terry Reed. “It provided the funds and the savings on taxes for us to be able to do something special, and we agreed it would be a great way to thank our employees for their dedication and hard work.” – Feb. 9, 2018 ABC News 10 article excerpt

Haworth Inc. (Holland, Michigan) – $1,000 bonuses for full-time employees, $500 bonuses for part-time employees; bonuses totaling $5 million:

Matt Haworth, chairman of the family-owned company, announced to staff on Wednesday, Jan. 24, that full time employees would receive one-time bonuses of $1,000, and part-timers would collect $500.

More than 4,500 employees who work for Haworth-branded companies around the globe will collect the rare bonus.

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Matt Haworth says the company is able to make the $5 million investment because of several factors including strong 2017 revenues which will be announced next month and an improved business climate state and nationally. The latter he attributes to a rollback of regulations and taxes, which lower company's operational costs. – Jan. 25, 2018 Grand Rapid News article excerpts

SEMCO Energy Gas Co. (Port Huron, Michigan) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today approved settlement agreements with seven utilities to pass on to ratepayers their savings from the federal tax law rewrite, beginning in July. Three other utilities had no impact from the changes.

Filings were approved for Alpena Power Co., DTE Gas Co., Michigan Gas Utilities Corp., Northern States Power, SEMCO Energy Gas Co., and Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corp. (UMERC).

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"Through swift action by the Commission, Michigan ratepayers will experience millions of dollars in refunds on their utility bills starting this summer due to changes in federal corporate income taxes," said Sally Talberg, chairman of the MPSC. “Utilities are benefiting from the tax cuts and their customers should, too.” – May 30, 2018 LARA Public Service Commission Press Release excerpts

Michigan Gas Utilities Corp. (Monroe, Michigan) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today approved settlement agreements with seven utilities to pass on to ratepayers their savings from the federal tax law rewrite, beginning in July. Three other utilities had no impact from the changes.

Filings were approved for Alpena Power Co., DTE Gas Co., Michigan Gas Utilities Corp., Northern States Power, SEMCO Energy Gas Co., and Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corp. (UMERC).

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"Through swift action by the Commission, Michigan ratepayers will experience millions of dollars in refunds on their utility bills starting this summer due to changes in federal corporate income taxes," said Sally Talberg, chairman of the MPSC. “Utilities are benefiting from the tax cuts and their customers should, too.” – May 30, 2018 LARA Public Service Commission Press Release excerpts

Alpena Power Co. (Alpena, Michigan) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today approved settlement agreements with seven utilities to pass on to ratepayers their savings from the federal tax law rewrite, beginning in July. Three other utilities had no impact from the changes.

Filings were approved for Alpena Power Co., DTE Gas Co., Michigan Gas Utilities Corp., Northern States Power, SEMCO Energy Gas Co., and Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corp. (UMERC).

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"Through swift action by the Commission, Michigan ratepayers will experience millions of dollars in refunds on their utility bills starting this summer due to changes in federal corporate income taxes," said Sally Talberg, chairman of the MPSC. “Utilities are benefiting from the tax cuts and their customers should, too.” – May 30, 2018 LARA Public Service Commission Press Release excerpts

Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corp. (UMERC) (Iron Mountain, Michigan) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today approved settlement agreements with seven utilities to pass on to ratepayers their savings from the federal tax law rewrite, beginning in July. Three other utilities had no impact from the changes.

Filings were approved for Alpena Power Co., DTE Gas Co., Michigan Gas Utilities Corp., Northern States Power, SEMCO Energy Gas Co., and Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corp. (UMERC).

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"Through swift action by the Commission, Michigan ratepayers will experience millions of dollars in refunds on their utility bills starting this summer due to changes in federal corporate income taxes," said Sally Talberg, chairman of the MPSC. “Utilities are benefiting from the tax cuts and their customers should, too.” – May 30, 2018 LARA Public Service Commission Press Release excerpts

Fishbeck, Thompson, Carr & Huber engineering (Grand Rapids, Michigan) -- $1,500 to all 400 full-time and part time employees: 

A local architecture engineering firm has issued bonuses to all of its employees following tax reform.

Grand Rapids-based Fishbeck, Thompson, Carr & Huber, or FTCH, said yesterday it issued $1,500 bonuses to all 400 of its full- and part-time employees, effective Dec. 29.

Jim Susan, president of FTCH, said the company decided to give out the bonuses as a result of the firm's tax savings following passage of the federal tax bill on Dec. 22.

“We just decided it was a little windfall for the firm in general, and we decided we would share that with all our staff members,” he said. “Everyone got the same amount, regardless of position.

“It was in keeping with the spirit of the tax cut and trying to move a little more money back into the economy, so we decided for those few reasons we would do that.” – Jan. 16, 2018 Grand Rapids Business Journal article excerpt

WebHobby Shop, LLC (Pontiac, Michigan) -- $2.00 per hour raise for employees:

“I am sure it seems like 'crumbs' to elitists but I was able to give them a $2 per hour raise because of the tax reform. It was great to do and my staff is very pleased.” – Bruce Zak, Principal, WEBHOBBYSHOP LLC

Consumers Energy (Jackson, Michigan) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

Consumers Energy today issued the following statement from President & CEO Patti Poppe:

"Today, Consumers Energy was pleased to submit a proposal to the Michigan Public Service Commission that would lower customer bills starting in 2018 by approximately $200 million, as a result of the recent federal tax reform changes. We are thrilled to be able to pass along 100 percent of the savings from tax reform to the people we are privileged to serve. This underscores our commitment to people, planet and prosperity for all of Michigan."— Jan 19, 2018 Consumers Energy press release

DTE Energy (Detroit, Michigan) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

DTE Energy issued the following statement regarding the impacts of H.R.1, the Tax and Jobs Act.

"The recent passage of the Federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will offer benefits to energy customers across the country -- including DTE's utility customers here in Michigan.

The reduction of the corporate tax rate will result in lower bills for DTE’s 2.2 million electric and 1.3 million gas customers.

In 2018, a savings of nearly $190 million will be passed along to customers. 

As this tax reduction works through the regulatory process, our average electric and gas customers will see a reduction in their rates of about 3 percent. The reduction in rates due to the tax law change will be a significant infusion into the Michigan economy as our customers will enjoy this benefit for years to come." – Jan. 23, 2018 DTE Energy press release

Lakestone Bank & Trust (Lapeer, Michigan) -- Pay raise for hourly employees of $1 per hour; $1,000 bonuses for salaried employees:

Lakestone Bank & Trust announced Friday that employees will benefit from the recently announced tax reform law.

Bruce J. Cady, chairman and CEO of Lakestone Bank & Trust said, “We are very appreciative of all Lakestone Bank & Trust employees and certainly what they have accomplished over the years, particularly the last year; and we want to commemorate the passing of this historic, economy-stimulating tax reform law. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity and we know we want to reinvest much of the savings back into our bank and the first place we are going to put it is into the hands of our employees. Employees are our most important asset.

All hourly employees received a $1 per hour raise and all salaried employees will receive a $1,000 bonus. The bank's board of directors overwhelmingly supported this action, resulting in a significant investment into the bank's employees. -- Jan. 28, 2018 The County Press article excerpt

Traverse City State Bank (Traverse City, Michigan):  $750 bonuses:

Sweeping federal legislation that provides lucrative tax cuts to businesses also is helping to fatten the wallets of Traverse City State Bank’s employees.

The bank announced in February that it was giving each of its 90 employees a one-time $750 bonus because of the federal tax overhaul that President Donald Trump signed in December and the bank’s strong performance last year.

“The tax reform has aided us in returning more funds to our staff in their paychecks and in turn, these bonuses will provide an additional boost to our local economy,” said bank CEO Connie Deneweth – March 2018, Traverse City Business News article excerpt

Waste Management Inc. (Multiple locations in Michigan) -- $2,000 bonuses:

In light of the meaningful contributions of its employees and the new U.S. corporate tax structure, the company will distribute US $2,000 in 2018 to every North American employee not on a bonus or sales incentive plan; that includes hourly and other employees.

“We are about to get a tax benefit as our U.S. corporate tax rate goes from 35 percent to 21 percent. In considering how to best spend that, we wanted to find a way to help grow our economy, which in turn, will help grow our business, and give some of the tax savings back to those hardworking employees who do not get the opportunity to participate in our salaried incentive plans,” said Jim Fish, president and chief executive officer, Waste Management.

“So, we are offering each North American hourly full-time employee and salaried employee who does not participate in any sales incentive or bonus plan during 2018, a cash bonus of US $2,000 to show our appreciation to so many of our valued employees while growing our business and returning a good portion of the tax savings directly to the overall economy,” he continued. – Jan. 10 2018, Waste Management Inc. press release excerpt

Webco Industries Inc. (Grand Rapids, Michigan) – Up to $2,000 bonuses:

Webco Industries based in Sand Springs is the latest employer to give workers a bonus following the passage last year of the Trump Administration's tax plan.

Webco says each employee was given $1,000 if they've been there for a year or more. Employees who have been there for a significant amount of time, were given $2,000.

Webco says they had more than a million dollars total to distribute to their employees, many of whom are in Sand Springs.

"The tax cuts and jobs act reduced corp tax rates, so that produced a significant amount of savings this year for Webco as our corporate tax bill was reduced," said Mike Howard with Webco Industries.

These were one-time bonuses and impacted employees in Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, Texas, Illinois, and Michigan. -- March 7, 2018 News on 6 article excerpt

STERIS Corp. (Michigan location in Lake Orion- Steris IMS) -- $1,000 bonuses totaling $7 million for non-executive U.S. -based employees:

Like many companies, the recent tax reform in the U.S. will result in significant additional earnings for STERIS to strategically grow our business and return value to Customers, employees and shareholders. One of our first actions on that front will be a one-time special discretionary bonus of $1,000 to all U.S. employees other than senior executives. -- Feb. 7, 2018 STERIS press release excerpt

AT&T -- $1,000 bonuses to 6,199 Michigan employees; Nationwide, $1 billion increase in capital expenditures:

Today, Congress approved legislation representing the first comprehensive tax reform in a generation. The President is expected to sign the bill in the coming days.

Once tax reform is signed into law, AT&T* plans to invest an additional $1 billion in the United States in 2018 and pay a special $1,000 bonus to more than 200,000 AT&T U.S. employees — all union-represented, non-management and front-line managers. If the President signs the bill before Christmas, employees will receive the bonus over the holidays.

“Congress, working closely with the President, took a monumental step to bring taxes paid by U.S. businesses in line with the rest of the industrialized world,” said Randall Stephenson, AT&T chairman and CEO. “This tax reform will drive economic growth and create good-paying jobs. In fact, we will increase our U.S. investment and pay a special bonus to our U.S. employees.”

Since 2012, AT&T has invested more in the United States than any other public company. Every $1 billion in capital invested in the telecom industry creates about 7,000 jobs for American workers, research shows. -- Dec. 20, 2017 AT&T Inc. press release

T.J. Maxx – 41 store locations in Michigan – Bonuses, increased retirement plan contributions, parental leave, enhanced vacation benefits, and charitable donations:

The 2017 Tax Act benefited the Company in the fourth quarter and full year Fiscal 2018. The Company expects to continue to benefit from the 2017 Tax Act going forward, primarily due to the lower U.S. corporate income tax rate. As a result of the estimated cash benefit related to the 2017 Tax Act, the Company is taking the following actions:

Associates

-A one-time, discretionary bonus to eligible, non-bonus-plan Associates, globally

-An incremental contribution to the Company’s defined contribution retirement plans for eligible Associates in the U.S. and internationally

-Instituting paid parental leave for eligible Associates in the U.S.

-Enhancing vacation benefits for certain U.S. Associates

Communities:

Made meaningful contributions to TJX’s charitable foundations around the world to further support TJX’s charitable giving. – Feb. 28, 2018 The TJX Companies Inc. press release excerpt

Fifth Third Bancorp  – 210 locations in Michigan; Nationally $1,000 bonuses for 13,500 employees and base wage raise increase to $15:

Newly passed tax legislation includes a reduction in corporate tax rates designed to spur economic growth. Carmichael said the tax cut allowed the Bank the opportunity to reevaluate its compensation structure and share some of those benefits with its talented and dedicated workforce.

Carmichael said the higher wage is an important step to help support individuals, their families and the communities in which we operate. Fifth Third has a history of investing in its 18,000 employees.

Once the legislation is signed into law, nearly 3,000 hourly employees will see their pay increase to $15 an hour. The one-time $1,000 bonus is expected to be distributed by the end of the year, assuming the president signs the bill before Christmas. Senior managers and executive leadership are excluded from this compensation.

“It is good for our communities, employees and Fifth Third Bank,” [President and CEO Greg] Carmichael said. – Dec. 20, 2017 Fifth Third press release

Best Buy -- 41 stores in Michigan -- $1,000 bonuses for full-time employees; $500 bonuses for part-time employees. Over 100,000 employees will receive bonuses:

Best Buy is the latest major corporation to hand out bonuses to its employees as a result of the recently passed corporate tax reform.

In a letter sent to employees Friday afternoon, CEO Hubert Joly said full-time employees will receive a one-time bonus of $1,000 and part-time employees $500.

All permanent employees who are not on an existing bonus plan will receive the additional funds. The bonuses are expected to show up in their paychecks this month.

In all, more than 100,000 of Best Buy’s 125,000 employees in the U.S., Mexico and Canada are slated to receive the extra payouts.

In addition, Best Buy is making a one-time contribution of $20 million to the Best Buy Foundation to help further expand its teen tech centers and Geek Squad Academies across the U.S.

“Our goal was simple: to say ‘thank you’ to more than 100,000 of our employees and help accelerate our work to bring much needed technology training to 1 million underserved teens a year,” said Jeff Shelman, a Best Buy spokesman. — Feb. 2 2018, Minneapolis Star Tribune

Home Depot --70 locations in Michigan -- Bonuses for all hourly employees, up to $1,000.

Dollar Tree, Inc. (Multiple locations in Michigan) -- $100 million investment in pay increases, enhanced benefits including maternity leave for qualifying employees, and employee training. 

Lowe's -- 6,000+ employees at 47 stores and one distribution facility in Michigan. Employees will receive bonuses of up to $1,000 based on length of service, for 260,000 employees; expanded benefits and maternity/parental leave; $5,000 of adoption assistance.

Ryder (Twenty-two locations in Michigan) – Tax reform bonuses:

Ryder System is the latest company to give its employees a bonus as result of the new tax law.

The Miami-based fleet management company (NYSE: R) will give a one-time cash bonus to all non-incentive bonus-eligible employees of the company employed on Dec. 31, according to a Securities and Exchange Commission filing.

The bonuses, totaling about $23 million, stem from a huge tax benefit that Ryder will receive as a result of changes in the recently passed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which reduces federal corporate tax rates to 21 percent from 35 percent.

Ryder said it will get a one-time tax benefit of about $586 million, or $11.04 a share, for the quarter ended Dec. 31. It said the net benefit is due to the estimated impact of reduced future tax rates on the company’s deferred tax liabilities.

The Fortune 500 company had 34,500 employees at the end of 2016, and reported $1.8 billion in revenue and $11.3 billion in assets in its most recent quarter. -- Jan. 30, 2018 South Florida Business Journal article excerpt

CarMax (Kentwood, Michigan) – $250-$1,500 bonuses depending on length of service:

The nation’s largest retailer of used cars, announced plans to provide one-time bonuses to most hourly and commissioned full-time and part-time associates as a result of the recently passed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017. Bonus amounts will vary from $200 up to $1,500 based on length of service with the company. – Feb 23. 2018, EPR Retail News article excerpt

Walmart - Michigan employees at 119 Walmart stores received tax reform bonuses, wage increases, and expanded maternity and parental leave. Walmart employees who adopt children will be given $5,000 to help cover expenses.

Cintas (Multiple locations in Michigan) --  $1,000 bonuses for employees of at least a year $500 for employees of less than a year. 

U-Haul (Multiple locations in Michigan) – $1,200 bonuses for full-time employees, $500 for part-time employees.

Taco John’s (Stevensville): All full-time and part-time crew members received a $200 after-tax bonus:

Taco John’s International, Inc. announced today that in response to the 2018 Tax Cut and Jobs Act, the company gave part of its projected tax savings to its restaurant crews, general managers, corporate staff and CORE (Children of Restaurant Employees).

On Friday, Feb. 23, Taco John’s International, Inc.’s employees received a one-time bonus, as follows:

  • Every restaurant crew member - full-time and part-time - received $200 (after taxes);
  • General managers and employees at the Taco John’s Franchisee Support Center in Cheyenne received $1,000 each; and,
  • The Executive Council of Taco John’s International, Inc. (Vice Presidents and above) donated their $1,000 bonuses (a total of $10,000) to CORE, a national not-for-profit organization that grants support to children of food and beverage service employees who are navigating life-altering circumstances.
     

“At Taco John’s International, our team is our family, so sharing the financial benefits that were a result of the recent tax reform legislation only makes sense,” said Jim Creel, CEO of Taco John’s International, Inc. “We encourage other restaurant brands to follow our example and give a portion of their savings to the people that are at the heart of what we do and to great organizations like CORE that support our crew. One hundred percent of CORE’s funds directly benefit children of restaurant employees who have been afflicted with life-threating conditions.”

“We are so grateful to the Taco John’s team for their generous donation to our CORE family members,” said Lauren LaViola, executive director of CORE. “Donations like theirs help us provide for our food and beverage service families experiencing loss, illness and other life-changing circumstances, and help us get closer to our goal of helping even more families across all 50 states in 2018.”

The total amount that Taco John’s International, Inc. gave exceeded $150,000.00. – Feb. 28, 2018 Taco John’s International, Inc. press release

Fiat Chrysler (Auburn Hills, Michigan) -- $2,000 bonuses for 60,000 employees; $1 billion investment in U.S. plant in Warren, Michigan; 2,500 new jobs

“It is only proper that our employees share in the savings generated by tax reform and that we openly acknowledge the resulting improvement in the U.S. business environment  by investing in our industrial footprint accordingly,” Chief Executive Officer Sergio Marchionne said in a statement. – Jan. 11, 2018 Bloomberg News article excerpt

Starbucks Coffee Company (Multiple locations in Michigan) – $500 stock grants for all retail employees, $2,000 stock grants for store managers, and varying plan and support center employee stock grants. Nationally, 8,000 new retail jobs; an additional wage increase this year, totaling approximately $120 million in wage increases, increased sick time benefits and parental leave.

McDonald’s (600+ locations in Michigan) – Increased tuition investments which will provide educational program access for 400,000 U.S. employees. $2,500 per year (up from $700) for crew working 15 hours a week, $3,000 (up from $1,050) for managers, and more:

McDonald’s Corporation today announced it will allocate $150 million over five years to its global Archways to Opportunity education program. This investment will provide almost 400,000 U.S. restaurant employees with accessibility to the program as the company will also lower eligibility requirements from nine months to 90 days of employment and drop weekly shift minimums from 20 hours to 15 hours. Additionally, McDonald’s will also extend some education benefits to restaurant employees’ family members. These enhancements underscore McDonald’s and its independent franchisees’ commitment to providing jobs that fit around the lives of restaurant employees so they may pursue their education and career ambitions.

The Archways to Opportunity program provides eligible U.S. employees an opportunity to earn a high school diploma, receive upfront college tuition assistance, access free education advising services and learn English as a second language.  

“Our commitment to education reinforces our ongoing support of the people who play a crucial role in our journey to build a better McDonald’s,” said Steve Easterbrook, McDonald’s President and CEO. “By offering restaurant employees more opportunities to further their education and pursue their career aspirations, we are helping them find their full potential, whether that’s at McDonald’s or elsewhere.”

Accelerated by changes in the U.S. tax law, McDonald’s increased investment in the Archways to Opportunity Program includes:

  • Increased Tuition Investment:
    • Crew: Eligible crew will have access to $2,500/year, up from $700/year.
    • Managers: Eligible Managers will have access to $3,000/year, up from $1,050.
    • Participants have a choice for how they apply this funding – whether it be to a community college, four year university or trade school. There is no lifetime cap on tuition assistance – restaurant employees will be able to pursue their education and career passions at their own pace. The new tuition assistance is effective May 1, 2018 and retroactive to January 1, 2018.
  • Lowered Eligibility Requirements: Increase access to the program by lowering eligibility requirements from nine months to 90 days of employment. In addition, dropping from 20 hours minimum to 15 hours minimum (roughly two full time shifts) per week to enable restaurant employees more time to focus on studies.
  • Extended Services to Families: Extension of Career Online High School and College Advisory services to restaurant employees’ family members through existing educational partners Cengage and Council for Adult and Experiential Learning (CAEL).
  • Additional Resources: Career exploration resources for eligible restaurant employees to be available later this year.
  • Creation of an International Education Fund: Grants to provide local initiatives and incentives in global markets to further education advancement programs.
     

“Since its inception, Archways to Opportunity was meant to match the ambition and drive of restaurant crew with the means and network to help them find success on their own terms,” said David Fairhurst, McDonald’s Chief People Officer. “By tripling tuition assistance, adding education benefits for family members and lowering eligibility requirements to the equivalent of a summer job, we are sending a signal that if you come work at your local McDonald’s, we’ll invest in your future.”

After launching in the U.S. in 2015, Archways to Opportunity has increased access to education for over 24,000 people and awarded over $21 million in high school and college tuition assistance. Graduates have received college degrees in Business Administration, Human Resources, Communications, Accounting, Microbiology and more. – March 29, 2018 McDonald’s Corporation press release excerpt

FedEx (Multiple locations in Michigan)– Accelerated and increased compensation; pension plan contributions:

FedEx Corporation is announcing three major programs today following the recently enacted U.S. Tax Cuts and Jobs Act:

  • Over $200 million in increased compensation, about two-thirds of which will go to hourly team members by advancing 2018 annual pay increases by six months to April 1st from the normal October date. The remainder will fund increases in performance- based incentive plans for salaried personnel.
  • A voluntary contribution of $1.5 billion to the FedEx pension plan to ensure it remains one of the best funded retirement programs in the country.
  • Investing $1.5 billion to significantly expand the FedEx Express Indianapolis hub over the next seven years. The Memphis SuperHub will also be modernized and enlarged in a major program the details of which will be announced later this spring.


FedEx believes the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will likely increase GDP and investment in the United States. – Jan. 26 2018, FedEx press release

Comcast (Multiple locations in Michigan) -- $1,000 bonuses; nationwide, at least $50 billion investment in infrastructure in next five years.

Wells Fargo   15 locations in Michigan -- Raised base wage from $13.50 to $15.00 per hour; $400 million in charitable donations for 2018; $100 million increased capital investment over the next three years.

Note: If you know of other Michigan examples, please email John Kartch at jkartch@atr.org

The running nationwide list of companies can be found at www.atr.org/list

More from Americans for Tax Reform


Democrat Threat to Hike Corporate Tax Rate Will Raise Utility Bills


Posted by John Kartch on Tuesday, July 30th, 2019, 12:00 PM PERMALINK

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act lowered the corporate rate from 35% to 21% which directly led to utility savings in all 50 states

The 2020 Democrat presidential candidates and Congressional Democrats are threatening to raise the corporate tax rate. Each time they do, they are threatening to directly raise utility bills for Americans across the country.
 
Utility customers in all 50 states are currently saving money on their monthly bills thanks to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act enacted in 2017 by the Republican House and Senate and signed by President Donald Trump.
 
The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act cut the corporate income tax rate from 35% to 21%. Most utilities are required by law to pass on those tax savings in form of lower rates for customers. This means lower electric bills, lower gas bills, and lower water bills for Americans, month after month.
 
Joe Biden, Kamala Harris, and Beto O'Rourke have all pledged to raise the corporate tax rate, as has Democrat Congressman John Yarmuth, chairman of the House Budget Committee. Most of the Democrats want a 33 percent corporate income tax increase by hiking the rate from 21 percent to 28 percent.
 
"When Democrats threaten to raise the corporate tax rate they are threatening to raise your utility bills -- month after month,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform.
 
Let's look at a few examples of how Americans are saving on utility bills thanks to the corporate rate reduction enacted by Republicans:
 
Consumers Energy (Jackson, Michigan)
 
“Today, Consumers Energy was pleased to submit a proposal to the Michigan Public Service Commission that would lower customer bills starting in 2018 by approximately $200 million, as a result of the recent federal tax reform changes. We are thrilled to be able to pass along 100 percent of the savings from tax reform to the people we are privileged to serve. This underscores our commitment to people, planet and prosperity for all of Michigan.’”— Jan. 19, 2018 Consumers Energy press release
 
Aqua Virginia, Inc. (Rockville, Virginia)
 
“The legislation cuts the federal corporate income tax rate from 35% to 21% effective January 1, 2018. This tax cut, in turn, reduces the cost of service for many of Virginia’s major electric, gas and water utilities. Utility rates paid by customers are based on the cost of service.
 
To preserve the savings from this tax cut for customers, the Commission ordered all applicable Virginia utilities to account for the tax savings by accruing a regulatory liability on the utility’s books. The tax savings will thus be quantified and available to be passed on to customers in subsequent rate proceedings.
 
The utilities subject to the Commission’s order serve millions of Virginia residential and business customers. They include Virginia-American Water Company; Aqua Virginia, Inc.; Washington Gas Light; Columbia Gas of Virginia; Virginia Natural Gas; Roanoke Gas; Atmos Energy; Southwestern Virginia Gas; Appalachian Natural Gas Distribution; Kentucky Utilities; Appalachian Power Company; and Virginia Electric and Power Company.” –January 8, 2018, Virginia SCC Press Release
 
Duke Energy Ohio, Inc. (Cincinnati, Ohio)
 
Duke Energy Ohio customers will receive approximately $20 million in annual tax savings on their electric bills beginning this month. The bill reduction is a result of the recent Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which federal lawmakers passed in late 2017.
 
"The tax act provides a unique opportunity for us to reduce customers' bills by millions of dollars," said Jim Henning, president of Duke Energy Ohio and Kentucky. "And that's exactly what we're doing here – delivering real savings to our customers."
 
Duke Energy Ohio also plans to lower its customers' natural gas bills by about $3 million beginning in May – subject to the approval of proposals filed with state regulators.
 
"The tax act reduced our corporate tax rate – and that's a benefit we are pleased to pass along to our customers," said Henning. "However, the impacts on our business and customers go far beyond the reduction in the corporate tax rate. While some of the changes reduce our federal tax liabilities over time, others could actually increase our tax obligations.
 
"We considered all of these scenarios as we determined the best ways to pass along the benefits of the tax act to our customers. And we continue to work through various regulatory proceedings in our efforts to ensure that our customers receive the benefits of this new law." –April 13, 2018, Duke Energy Press Release
 
Nevada Energy (Las Vegas, Nevada)
 
“Effective April 1, 2018, we are passing on to you a monthly savings as a result of federal tax reform.” –Excerpt from NVEnergy’s Energy Pricing Plans
 
Tampa Electric (Tampa Florida)
 
“Because of recent changes made to the federal tax law, customers will directly benefit. What Tampa Electric would have paid in corporate income taxes will instead be used to the cost of restoring power after Hurricane Irma and several other earlier named. Additionally, Tampa Electric bills will reflect the ongoing benefits from tax reform starting in 2019” -- March 1, 2018, Tampa Electric Press Release
 
Citizens’ Electric Company of Lewisburg (Lewisburg, Pennsylvania)
 
The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.
 
Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release
 
ATR has a national compilation of over 100 examples here. It is by no means comprehensive, so if you notice we are missing a utility, please let us know by emailing ideas@atr.org

 

*The ATR list of 134 utility examples is below*

Note: This list is by no means comprehensive -- if you know of a utility that is missing from this list, please let us know at ideas@atr.org

Alabama Power (Birmingham, Alabama) – The utility is passing along tax savings to customers:

Alabama Power Company customers will see a reduction in their bills because of the federal income tax cut approved by Congress last year, the Public Service Commission announced at its monthly meeting today.

The reduction in 2018 will be for $257 million, about a 9 percent cut, the PSC said.

The cut requires no action by the PSC, which regulates Alabama Power.

The reduction takes effect in July and continues through December.

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, signed into law in December, reduced the federal corporate income tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent effective Jan. 1, 2018.

The three commissioners, all Republicans, said it was good to see consumers benefit from the tax cuts promoted and signed into law by President Trump.

"This is a great day for Alabama consumers and taxpayers," Commission President Twinkle Andress Cavanaugh said.

The commission approved two requests from Alabama Power related to the income tax cut.

One would allow the company to apply up to $30 million of excess federal deferred income taxes this year to Energy Cost Recovery, a factor in rate-setting.

The other request from Alabama Power was to make several changes to the PSC's method of setting rates, called Rate Stabilization and Equalization, or RSE. The PSC said the changes would enable Alabama Power "to mitigate the credit quality impacts" resulting from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act and preserve rate stability for customers. The changes would allow Alabama Power to increase the equity share of its capital investment, the PSC said.

In conjunction with that second request, Alabama Power committed to no increases in its base rates through 2020 and to credit customers $50 million next year, the PSC said. – May 1, 2018 AL.com article excerpt

Alagasco (Spire Inc.) (Birmingham, Alabama)  – The utility will pass tax cut savings on to customers:

Spire is giving relief to its Alabama customers in the form of rate decreases as a result of the utility being a beneficiary of the Trump tax plan.

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Spire, formerly known as Alagasco, is among the companies giving back either to customers or employees due to receiving a tax cut. – February 2, 2018, AL.com article excerpt

Alaska Electric Light and Power (Juneau, Alaska) – The utility will pass tax reform savings to customers.

Alliant Energy, Wisconsin (Madison, Wisconsin) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

Alliant said its retail electric costs will rise by a total of $194 million in 2019 and 2020 as it brings on the 700-megawatt, natural gas-fueled West Riverside power plant near Beloit in the second half of 2019.

Alliant’s natural gas expenses are projected to rise $24 million over that period.

But rather than raising customer rates, the utility said it will cut costs via fuel savings and income tax reductions. - May 26, 2018 Wisconsin State Journal article excerpt

Alpena Power Co. (Alpena, Michigan) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today approved settlement agreements with seven utilities to pass on to ratepayers their savings from the federal tax law rewrite, beginning in July. Three other utilities had no impact from the changes.

Filings were approved for Alpena Power Co., DTE Gas Co., Michigan Gas Utilities Corp., Northern States Power, SEMCO Energy Gas Co., and Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corp. (UMERC).

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"Through swift action by the Commission, Michigan ratepayers will experience millions of dollars in refunds on their utility bills starting this summer due to changes in federal corporate income taxes," said Sally Talberg, chairman of the MPSC. “Utilities are benefiting from the tax cuts and their customers should, too.” – May 30, 2018 LARA Public Service Commission Press Release excerpts

Ameren Illinois (Chicago, Illinois) – The utility requested that tax savings be passed onto customers:

Ameren Illinois electric customers could save an average of $2.50 to $3.00 per month in 2018 and natural gas customers could save an average of $1 per month if the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) approves the company's plan to pass savings from the recently approved federal tax cut legislation back to its customers Customers using both electricity and natural gas could see a combined savings.

In the proposal filed with the ICC today, the company is seeking approval to pass along federal tax savings to electric customers beginning this year.  A similar proposal was filed last week on behalf of Ameren Illinois natural gas customers. 

"Under the new tax plan, Ameren Illinois’ effective tax rate will decrease by nearly 13%,” said Richard Mark, chairman and president, Ameren Illinois. "The plan we have filed with the ICC gives us the ability to expedite the return of these savings to our customers."

The Energy Infrastructure Modernization Act of 2011 provides a mechanism to return these savings to electric customers, but without filing the petition customers would have to wait until 2020 to receive the benefits. If approved by the ICC, Ameren Illinois customers will begin seeing these savings in March. – Jan. 22 2018, Ameren Illinois press release

Ameren Missouri (St. Louis, Missouri) - The utility will pass cut savings to customers: 

The Missouri Public Service Commission has approved an agreement that reduces the annual electric revenues of Union Electric Company doing business as Ameren Missouri.

The rate decrease of approximately $166,500.000 reflects a reduction in the corporate tax rate from 35 to 21% as a result of the passage of the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.  Residential customers using 1,000-kilowatt hours a month will see electric rates decrease by about $6.21 per month, effective August 1st. - July 6, 2018, KTTN article excerpt

Appalachian Natural Gas (Abingdon, Virginia) – The utility will pass tax cut savings on to customers:

The legislation cuts the federal corporate income tax rate from 35% to 21% effective January 1, 2018. This tax cut, in turn, reduces the cost of service for many of Virginia’s major electric, gas and water utilities. Utility rates paid by customers are based on the cost of service.

To preserve the savings from this tax cut for customers, the Commission ordered all applicable Virginia utilities to account for the tax savings by accruing a regulatory liability on the utility’s books. The tax savings will thus be quantified and available to be passed on to customers in subsequent rate proceedings.

The utilities subject to the Commission’s order serve millions of Virginia residential and business customers. They include Virginia-American Water Company; Aqua Virginia, Inc.; Washington Gas Light; Columbia Gas of Virginia; Virginia Natural Gas; Roanoke Gas; Atmos Energy; Southwestern Virginia Gas; Appalachian Natural Gas Distribution; Kentucky Utilities; Appalachian Power Company; and Virginia Electric and Power Company. –January 8, 2018, Virginia SCC Press Release

Appalachian Power Co. (Milton, West Virginia) – the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers.

Appalachian Power Company saved $235 million dollars from the federal tax cuts and the company is proposing passing the money back to its customers in a variety of ways.

The multi-pronged proposal is in a filing with the state Public Service Commission due Wednesday. The PSC is requiring all utilities to tell it their tax cut savings and what they plan to do with it.

West Virginia Consumer Advocate Jackie Roberts told MetroNews the money clearly belongs to the customers.

“They (the utilities) had taxes in their rates and now the taxes in their rates have significantly decreased—so they shouldn’t be able to keep collecting and keeping those higher taxes in their rates,” Roberts said.

Appalachian Power Company Communications Director Jeri Matheney agrees–the $235 million Appalachian Power will save belongs to its customers.

“It is customer money. What we propose to do is provide a method to keep rates as stable as possible over the longterm and as much as possible eliminate the need for rate increases,” Matheney said.

The Appalachian Power distribution proposal for West Virginia customers includes:

–$131 million to completely offset the company’s fuel and vegetation control program funding request that was part of an April filing with the PSC

–$19 million reduction in the company’s base rate case filed earlier this month (taking the $115 million request down to $96 million)

               –$51 million to reduce next year’s fuel recovery cost rate case

               –$1 million for a pilot economic development grant program

               –$30.1 million to return to customers over the next three years – May 30, 2018, MetroNews article excerpt

Aqua Virginia, Inc (Rockville, Virginia) – The utility will pass tax cut savings on to customers:

The legislation cuts the federal corporate income tax rate from 35% to 21% effective January 1, 2018. This tax cut, in turn, reduces the cost of service for many of Virginia’s major electric, gas and water utilities. Utility rates paid by customers are based on the cost of service.

To preserve the savings from this tax cut for customers, the Commission ordered all applicable Virginia utilities to account for the tax savings by accruing a regulatory liability on the utility’s books. The tax savings will thus be quantified and available to be passed on to customers in subsequent rate proceedings.

The utilities subject to the Commission’s order serve millions of Virginia residential and business customers. They include Virginia-American Water Company; Aqua Virginia, Inc.; Washington Gas Light; Columbia Gas of Virginia; Virginia Natural Gas; Roanoke Gas; Atmos Energy; Southwestern Virginia Gas; Appalachian Natural Gas Distribution; Kentucky Utilities; Appalachian Power Company; and Virginia Electric and Power Company. –January 8, 2018, Virginia SCC Press Release

Arizona Public Service (Phoenix, Arizona) -- The utility requested a $119 million bill reduction for customers due to tax reform:

APS has requested the Arizona Corporation Commission approve a $119 million bill reduction for customers, based on federal corporate tax cuts, effective February 1, 2018.

If approved, the $119 million decrease will offset the $95 million revenue increase that resulted from APS’s last rate review. The savings of $0.004258/kWh will be passed directly to customers through the Tax Expense Adjustor Mechanism (TEAM), a new adjustor mechanism that was included in the company’s rate review, and customer savings will vary with actual energy usage. APS customers would receive the credit on their monthly bill. – Jan. 9, 2018 Arizona Public Service press release

Atlanta Gas Light Co. (Atlanta, Georgia) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

Atlanta Gas Light Co. received approval from the Georgia Public Service Commission for a stipulation that allows for $82 million in customer benefits as a result of the federal tax reform law. – May 16, 2018, SNL Daily Gas Report Excerpt

Atlantic City Electric (Atlantic City, New Jersey) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

Atlantic City Electric will provide $23 million in annual tax savings to its customers. The company made a filing this month with the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities, which was approved on March 26, 2018. Customers will begin to see reductions on their bills around April 1, 2018. - April 3, 2018, Exelon Utilities press release excerpt

Atmos Energy (Owensboro, Kentucky) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers: 

“Atmos Energy, which serves western Kentucky, announced in March that it will be cutting the average residential bill by just over 3 percent. Other savings from tax reform will fund infrastructure upgrades across the Commonwealth. Companies in Kentucky have been able to expand their operation because of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.” - May 8, 2018, Rep. Brett Guthrie statement on House floor

AVANGRID (Orange, Connecticut) – The utility is passing savings from tax reform to customers:

AVANGRID, Inc., a diversified U.S. energy company, today issued the following statement regarding the impact of the 2017 tax reform act.

AVANGRID’s regulated natural gas and electricity companies will pass along to customers the full benefit of any tax savings that the companies realize as a result of the 2017 federal tax reform act.

Among other changes, the tax reform act reduces the federal corporate tax rate from 35 to 21 percent. As a matter of fairness, AVANGRID believes that any resulting tax savings should be extended to customers. – Jan. 10, 2018 AVANGRID press release

Avista Corporation (Spokane, Washington) – The utility will pass federal tax reform savings to customers:

Avista customers could collectively see a $50 million to $60 million annual benefit from federal tax reform, utility officials said Wednesday.

The savings on individual customers’ bills, however, won’t be known until later this year.

Corporate tax rates for the Spokane-based utility dropped from 35 percent to 21 percent effective Jan. 1. Savings from the lower taxes will get passed on to Avista’s utility customers in Washington, Idaho and Oregon, said Mark Thies, senior vice president and chief financial officer.

--

The anticipated $50 million to $60 million in annual savings is the result of the lower federal tax rate and changes to Avista's deferred tax liability related to depreciation costs. As the result of the depreciation changes, about $442 million will be returned to Avista customers over 35 years, Thies said. – Feb. 21, 2018 The Spokesman-Review article excerpt

Baltimore Gas & Electric (Baltimore, Maryland) – The utility is passing on $82 million worth of tax savings, resulting in lower gas and electric bills for customers

Today BGE will file with the Maryland Public Service Commission (PSC) to pass approximately $82 million in annual tax savings to customers, resulting from federal tax cost reductions. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which decreased the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent, was signed into law on Dec. 22, 2017 and became effective on Jan. 1, 2018. If approved by the PSC, the average BGE residential electric customer can expect to see an estimated $2.31 decrease on their monthly bill, and the average residential combined natural gas and electric customer can expect an estimated $4.27 monthly reduction, effective in February 2018.

“Reduced tax costs create an opportunity for BGE customers to benefit from further decreases in their total energy bills, said Calvin G. Butler Jr, chief executive officer of BGE. – Jan. 5, 2018 Baltimore Gas & Electric press release

Bermuda Water Company (Phoenix, Arizona) – The utility will pass tax savings on to customers:

The Arizona Corporation Commission is following through on its promise to pass savings created by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act to Arizona utility ratepayers. As of August, the effort has totaled $189,088,437.

At the August Open Meeting, the Commission addressed tax adjustments for both the Quail Creek and Bermuda Water Companies. The largest tax adjustment occurred earlier this year when the Commission approved a $119 million dollar reduction to benefit APS customers.- August 24, Prescott News Online

Black Hills Energy (Rapid City, South Dakota) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

"Black Hills Energy is currently reviewing the recently approved Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017," spokeswoman Brandy Johnson said in an email. "We will work with utility regulators to develop a plan to provide customers the benefit of the corporate tax rate reduction."  – Jan. 13, 2018 Lincoln Journal Star article excerpt

California Water Service (San Jose, California) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers

California Water Service (Cal Water) submitted a filing with the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) yesterday to decrease revenue needed in its service areas by almost $18 million, due to changes in federal tax laws and CPUC-authorized capital equity and debt financing costs. If approved as submitted, new rates reflecting the lower tax rates and financing costs will be effective July 1, 2018. – May 30, 2018 GlobeNewsWire article excerpt

Center Point Energy (Houston, Texas) - The utility is passing on tax savings to customers:

CenterPoint Energy, the largest natural gas utility in the state with more than 400,000 customers, has proposed to reduce its rates by $19.2 million beginning in October.

CenterPoint filed the request with the Arkansas Public Service Commission on Friday in response to an order by the commission to reduce rates as a result of the federal tax law change passed in December. Congress passed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that reduced the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent.

If the commission approves the lowered rate, Houston-based CenterPoint's rates would drop 9.5 percent on bills from October to January and 7.3 percent in January. For a customer with a bill of $100, it would fall to $90.50 under the first scenario and to $92.70 under the second scenario.

"Tax reform is a win for customers and reduced costs are being returned to them through various mechanisms or rate proceedings within each of our operating jurisdictions," said Alicia Dixon, CenterPoint's spokesman. – August 28, 2018, Northwest Arkansas Democrat Gazette article excerpt

Central Maine Power Company (Augusta, Maine) - the utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

CMP will decrease distribution rates by $16,429,187 to reflect distribution revenue requirement savings associated with the Tax Act. The decrease associated with the Tax Act -4- includes the one-time deferral of Tax Act benefits of $5,641,368 associated with the period January 2018 – June 2018. - June 21, 2018, State of Maine Public Utilities Commission Central Maine Power Company Annual Compliance Filing

Chattanooga Gas Company (Chattanooga, Tennessee) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

During the Conference, the Commissioners voted unanimously to require Atmos Energy Corporation ("Atmos Energy"), Chattanooga Gas Company ("Chattanooga Gas"), Kingsport Power Company d/b/a AEP Appalachian Power ("Kingsport Power"), Piedmont Natural Gas Company ("Piedmont Natural Gas"), and Tennessee American Water Company ("Tennessee American Water"), to immediately apply deferred accounting treatment, specifically described herein, with respect to the impact of the lowering of the federal corporate income tax rate and to require the named public utilities to provide to the Commission no later than March 31, 2018, the amounts deferred and a proposal to reduce rates or otherwise make adjustments to account for the tax benefits resulting from the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, Pub. L. No. 115-97 ("2017 Tax Act"). – February 6, 2018, Tennessee Public Utility Commission Report excerpt

Citizens’ Electric Company of Lewisburg (Lewisburg, Pennsylvania) – the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

Cleco Corporation. (Pineville, Louisiana) – The utility will pass tax savings to customers:

Cleco confirmed it will pass along savings to customers related to the recent tax reform. 

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which was signed into law on Dec. 22, 2017 and became effective on Jan. 1, 2018, decreased the federal corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent, reducing the amount of federal income tax Cleco will have to pay. 

--

“In an effort to promptly provide our customers with the benefits of the federal tax reduction, Cleco will deliver a plan to the LPSC outlining customer savings,” said Taylor. “We have anticipated these savings and are prepared to pass them along to our customers at the direction of the LPSC.” – Feb. 22, 2018 Cleco Corporation press release excerpt

College Utilities (Fairbanks, Alaska) – The utility will pass tax cut savings along to customers:

In December, Congress passed new tax law that included a major cut to the corporate tax rate — to 21 percent from 35 percent. That will likely mean major savings for the small number of Alaska utilities that aren't cooperatives or municipally owned.

Those utilities include Enstar Natural Gas, which serves Anchorage, the Kenai Peninsula and Mat-Su; Alaska Electric Light and Power (AEL&P) in Juneau; and Golden Heart Utilities and College Utilities, water and sewer utilities in Fairbanks.  – March 7, 2018 Anchorage Daily News article excerpt

Columbia Gas of Virginia (Chester, Virginia) – The utility will pass tax cut savings on to customers:

The legislation cuts the federal corporate income tax rate from 35% to 21% effective January 1, 2018. This tax cut, in turn, reduces the cost of service for many of Virginia’s major electric, gas and water utilities. Utility rates paid by customers are based on the cost of service.

To preserve the savings from this tax cut for customers, the Commission ordered all applicable Virginia utilities to account for the tax savings by accruing a regulatory liability on the utility’s books. The tax savings will thus be quantified and available to be passed on to customers in subsequent rate proceedings.

The utilities subject to the Commission’s order serve millions of Virginia residential and business customers. They include Virginia-American Water Company; Aqua Virginia, Inc.; Washington Gas Light; Columbia Gas of Virginia; Virginia Natural Gas; Roanoke Gas; Atmos Energy; Southwestern Virginia Gas; Appalachian Natural Gas Distribution; Kentucky Utilities; Appalachian Power Company; and Virginia Electric and Power Company. –January 8, 2018, Virginia SCC Press Release

Commonwealth Edison (commonly known as ComEd) (Chicago, Illinois) – The utility will pass tax savings to customers:

The recent annual formula rate filing also included an advancement of $205 million from anticipated savings in 2019 as a result of the federal tax cut and jobs act.

“In this filing, we have proposed to the ICC that we advance into 2019 with savings that customers would realize through the lower tax rates. The formula ratemaking process allows for such timely distribution of savings. It also would help to extend the stable rate environment that we have had for some time since before the smart grid program came and launched,” said Gomez. – April 25, 2018 The Chicago Citizen press release excerpt

Consumers Energy (Jackson, Michigan) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

Consumers Energy today issued the following statement from President & CEO Patti Poppe:

‘Today, Consumers Energy was pleased to submit a proposal to the Michigan Public Service Commission that would lower customer bills starting in 2018 by approximately $200 million, as a result of the recent federal tax reform changes. We are thrilled to be able to pass along 100 percent of the savings from tax reform to the people we are privileged to serve. This underscores our commitment to people, planet and prosperity for all of Michigan.’”—Jan. 19, 2018 Consumers Energy press release

Delmarva Power (Newark, Delaware) – the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

Tax cuts passed by Congress in December have effectively caused Delmarva Power to reduce its power rate increase request in Delaware by $26 million, the company announced on Friday. – February 9, 2018 Delaware Online excerpt

Dominion Energy (SCE&G) (Cayce, South Carolina)  – The utility will pass tax cut savings on to customers:

Virginia utility Dominion Energy (D) announced a deal to purchase South Carolina's SCANA(SCG) for $7.9 billion -- and Dominion plans to pay $1.3 billion to SCANA's South Carolina Electric & Gas Company customers within 90 days after the merger closes.

That works out to an average of about $1,000 for each SCE&G residential customer. Payments will depend on how much electricity SCE&G customers have used in the past year.

Dominion also said Wednesday that it plans an average 5% rate reduction for SCE&G customers, thanks in part to to lower corporate taxes under the new federal tax law in Washington.

Dominion said the rate cut would lower the average SCE&G customer's electric bill by more than $7 a month – January 3, 2018, CNN Business article excerpt

Dominion Energy, Utah – The utility will lower rates for customers because of tax reform:

As a result of federal tax cuts, Dominion Energy is passing on $17 million in savings to its consumers.

The Utah Division of Public Utilities announced that the energy company filed January 31, 2018, for the multi-millions in adjustments that enables customers to get a break on their gas bills.

According to the Division of Public Utilities, Utah utility customers will begin seeing savings from federal tax reform over the next few months.

A press release stated that the first wave of cuts should take effect in the next 30 days, providing $2.5 million in savings on infrastructure.

“Ever since federal tax reform legislation was passed, our Division of Public Utilities has been working closely with the Public Service Commission and utilities to determine the best method to pass on tax savings to Utah customers. Consumers should begin seeing lower gas bills soon and our Division will continue to ensure other tax cuts reach customer bills as quickly as possible,” stated Chris Parker, Division Director, in a press release.

Additional reductions will follow Dominion Energy’s gas cost filing later this spring. The Division is working with other agencies to immediately reduce base rates to customers by $14.5 million more, the press release stated. -- Feb. 5, 2018 KUTV CBS Salt Lake City article

DTE Energy (Detroit, Michigan) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

DTE Energy issued the following statement regarding the impacts of H.R.1, the Tax and Jobs Act.

"The recent passage of the Federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will offer benefits to energy customers across the country – including DTE’s utility customers here in Michigan. The reduction of the corporate tax rate will result in lower bills for DTE’s 2.2 million electric and 1.3 million gas customers.

“In 2018, a savings of nearly $190 million will be passed along to customers. 

“As this tax reduction works through the regulatory process, our average electric and gas customers will see a reduction in their rates of about 3 percent. The reduction in rates due to the tax law change will be a significant infusion into the Michigan economy as our customers will enjoy this benefit for years to come.” – Jan. 23, 2018 DTE Energy press release

Duke Energy Carolinas and Duke Energy Progress (Charlotte, North Carolina) – The utilities will pass along tax savings to customers:

 

Duke Energy today outlined its proposal to pass along savings from the new federal tax law to its North Carolina customers in ways that will lower bills in the near term and help offset increases in the future.

Duke Energy Carolinas (DEC) and Duke Energy Progress (DEP) offered the proposal in a filing with the North Carolina Utilities Commission (NCUC) today. Duke Energy has maintained customers' rates significantly below the national average for many decades while providing safe, reliable and increasingly clean energy for North Carolinians.

"This is a unique opportunity that allows us to reduce customer bills in the short term while also helping to offset future rate increases," said David Fountain, Duke Energy's North Carolina president. "With a balanced approach, our customers can benefit from a reduction in the corporate income tax rate, while we continue to make smart investments on behalf of our customers." – Feb. 1, 2018 Duke Energy press release

Duke Energy Florida (St. Petersburg, Florida) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

Duke Energy Florida today announced that customers will directly benefit from the new federal tax law and avoid a rate increase for power restoration costs associated with the company's response to last September's Hurricane Irma.

Instead of increasing customer rates, the company plans to apply federal tax reform savings toward those storm costs.

On Dec. 28, 2017, the company had filed for recovery of $513 million – $381 million for power restoration costs and $132 million to replenish the storm reserve fund. Residential customers would have seen an increase of $5.20 per 1,000 kWh of electricity on a typical monthly bill over a three-year recovery period – an average of $187.20. Commercial and industrial customers were expected to see an increase of approximately 2.5 to 6.6 percent, though bills would have varied depending on a number of factors.

Like many companies, Duke Energy has been working to analyze the benefits of tax reform.

"We are pleased that this solution will prevent a rate increase for our customers," said Harry Sideris, Duke Energy Florida state president. "Hurricane Irma was the worst storm to ever hit Duke Energy Florida and impacted many lives. Redirecting the tax reform savings against the storm costs ensures that our customers will reap the benefits of this new law." – Jan. 24, 2018 Duke Energy Florida press release

Duke Energy Indiana (Plainfield, Indiana) -- the utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

Plainfield-based Duke Energy Indiana has reached a settlement with the Indiana Office of Utility Consumer Counselor and other parties regarding the disbursement of savings to customers from the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. The utility says customers will receive approximately $142 million in annual savings.

The OUCC says when the legislation went into effect in January, the federal tax rate for most investor-owned utilities fell from 35 percent to 21 percent. As a result, the average residential customer will see their monthly bill reduced by about 5 percent, or $7.33, in 2018.

"The federal tax act is an opportunity for us to lower customer bills and help offset future rising costs," said Duke Energy Indiana President Melody Birmingham-Byrd. "We’ve reached an agreement to pass along tax savings embedded in our electric rates over the next two years. It’s a constructive agreement that reduces rates while still preserving our credit quality, which is important for keeping customer bills low."

Duke Energy says it began reflecting the lower federal tax rate in customers' bills earlier this year. The settlement, which included the Indiana Industrial Group and Nucor Steel, also proposes reducing base rates in September to reflect the lower tax rate. It also includes refunds of accumulated deferred taxes in 2018 and 2020. - June 28, 2018, Inside Indiana article excerpt

Duke Energy Kentucky, Inc. (Cincinnati, Ohio) – the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

Across the Ohio River in Kentucky, state regulators continue to review the company's proposals that recommend allocating more than $15 million of tax act benefits to Duke Energy Kentucky customers. – April 13, 2018, Duke Energy Press Release

Duke Energy Ohio, Inc. (Cincinnati, Ohio) – The utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

Duke Energy Ohio customers will receive approximately $20 million in annual tax savings on their electric bills beginning this month. The bill reduction is a result of the recent Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which federal lawmakers passed in late 2017.

"The tax act provides a unique opportunity for us to reduce customers' bills by millions of dollars," said Jim Henning, president of Duke Energy Ohio and Kentucky. "And that's exactly what we're doing here – delivering real savings to our customers."

Duke Energy Ohio also plans to lower its customers' natural gas bills by about $3 million beginning in May – subject to the approval of proposals filed with state regulators.

"The tax act reduced our corporate tax rate – and that's a benefit we are pleased to pass along to our customers," said Henning. "However, the impacts on our business and customers go far beyond the reduction in the corporate tax rate. While some of the changes reduce our federal tax liabilities over time, others could actually increase our tax obligations.

"We considered all of these scenarios as we determined the best ways to pass along the benefits of the tax act to our customers. And we continue to work through various regulatory proceedings in our efforts to ensure that our customers receive the benefits of this new law." – April 13, 2018, Duke Energy Press Release

El Paso Electric Company (El Paso, Texas) – The utility will give refunds to customers due to tax reform:

El Paso Electric (EPE) was one of the first utilities in the state of Texas to address and identify a mechanism to refund Texas customers due to the reduction in the federal income tax rate.

On December 14, 2017, the unopposed settlement approved by the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT) included a provision to refund EPE’s Texas customers for the reduction in the federal income tax rate.

EPE is currently calculating the changes and impacts of the new tax law to determine the amount of the refund to be filed in mid-April.  EPE expects Texas customers will begin to see the refund as a credit on their bills by mid-year 2018 following PUCT approval of its refund filing. – Jan. 23, 2018 El Paso Electric Company press release

Enstar Natural Gas Company (Anchorage, Alaska) – The utility will pass tax reform savings to customers.

Entergy Arkansas (Little Rock, Arkansas) – The utility will pass tax reform savings to customers:

If approved by the APSC, the multi-million dollars in tax savings will benefit customers in the following ways:                                               

  • Customer bill credits will begin in April so customers will begin to benefit almost immediately and prior to summer when usage is typically higher.
  • Residential customers will see a savings of an estimated $20 per month for every 1000 kWh consumed from April 2018 to December 2019.
  • Business customers also will see significant bill reductions, allowing them to reinvest those savings into their business in 2018 as they deem appropriate.

Entergy Louisiana (Baton Rouge, Louisiana) - The utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

Entergy Louisiana customers will see a series of rate reductions over the remainder of 2018 under an agreement approved today by the Louisiana Public Service Commission.

The first of the reductions will occur in May as a result of $210 million in federal tax reform-related savings, $105 million of which will be returned to customers over the next eight months, with the remaining half of these savings returned to customers over the following four years.  As a result, a typical residential customer using 1,000 kWh per month will see a roughly $4.20 decrease on monthly bills from May through December of this year.

A second reduction of approximately $2 per month on residential bills will occur in September 2018 as a result of additional credits tied to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act approved by Congress in late 2017. At the same time, Entergy Louisiana will begin realizing approximately $130 million in annual tax savings to offset the cost of upgrading infrastructure.

“Along with customer refunds, tax reform also helps provide us the ability to invest in modernizing our system for the benefit of customers while maintaining some of the lowest rates in the country,” Phillip May, president and CEO of Entergy Louisiana, said. –
April 18, 2018, Entergy Louisiana Press Release

Entergy Mississippi (Jackson, Mississippi): The utility will pass tax reform savings to customers:

If approved by the MPSC, the multi-million dollars in tax savings will benefit customers in three ways:

  • short-term bill credits,
  • long-term rate reductions and
  • alleviation of some future rate increases. 

These are projected to begin this summer, when usage and bills are typically at their highest. Based on its plan, Entergy Mississippi expects residential customer bills to drop more than $30 per month during July, August and September, from a combination of lower-rates and short-term bill credits.

Without the tax reform, which reduced the corporate tax from 35 percent to 21 percent, substantial projects undertaken by Entergy to strengthen and modernize the grid would have required significant rate increases.

“We intend to ensure that our customers receive timely benefits from the new tax reforms,” said Haley Fisackerly, Entergy Mississippi president and CEO. “The tax reduction will allow us to reduce rates, provide substantial bill credits and lower our customers’ bills during the high-usage summer months. – Feb. 26, 2018 Entergy Mississippi press release excerpt

Entergy New Orleans (New Orleans, Louisiana) – the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

Entergy New Orleans filed with the New Orleans City Council Monday its proposal for implementing the benefits of the recent federal tax reform legislation. If approved by the council, customers would realize approximately $47 million annually in near-term tax savings and an additional $71 million in savings over the longer term.

"We're working to ensure that our customers receive timely benefits from the new tax reform legislation," said Charles Rice, president and CEO of Entergy New Orleans, LLC. "We're glad to pass on these additional savings by reducing rates below what they otherwise would be, especially during the hot summer months when energy usage rises along with the thermometer."  – April 11, 2018, Entergy New Orleans Press Release

Entergy Texas (The Woodlands, Texas) – the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

`Entergy Texas is also passing substantial savings from federal tax reform directly to customers. These tax savings, along with investments in infrastructure to reduce outages and improve service, will result in more reliable and affordable energy to customers.

Following the passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, the federal corporate tax rate was lowered, and Entergy Texas will flow back more than $200 million to customers over the next two years. This sum represents funds that Entergy Texas had collected from customers according to IRS rules to pay future taxes at the higher tax rate that is no longer in effect. Additionally, Entergy Texas’ new rates will reflect the lower tax rate going forward. - May 15, 2018, Entergy Texas Press Release excerpt

EPCOR USA (Phoenix, Arizona) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

More than 57,000 EPCOR wastewater customers will receive more than $1.1 million in federal corporate tax cut savings, reducing the amount of their monthly wastewater bill starting with the July 2018 billing cycle.

Today, the Arizona Corporation Commission (ACC) approved EPCOR’s request to refund $1,106,392 in tax reform savings to all of the company’s residential and commercial wastewater customers.

Residential customers will receive a monthly credit of $1.26 until new rates are determined in a future rate case. Because wastewater service is billed at a flat rate, all residential customers will receive the same monthly credit. Residential customers will also receive a one-time credit of $7.56 on their July 2018 bill, refunding corporate taxes collected through June 2018 at the previous tax rate before today’s ACC approval of EPCOR’s application.

“We are extremely pleased to help our wastewater customers save more than $1 million each year, and it’s important to us that we put this into effect as soon as possible,” commented Joe Gysel, President of EPCOR USA, Arizona’s largest regulated water utility. “All our customers deserve to share in the savings generated by federal tax reform. It's positive for them, for their communities and for our state.” - June 12, 2018 EPCOR press release

 

Eversource Energy (Boston, Massachusetts) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

The newly passed federal tax law reduces the amount of taxes Eversource will be paying by millions of dollars and today the energy company has informed the Department of Public Utilities of its decision to voluntarily pass those savings along to customers.

“We believe it’s important that our customers reap the benefit of a lower tax rate,” said Eversource Massachusetts Electric Operations President Craig Hallstrom. “As a regulated power company our rates are based on our costs, including federal taxes, so if taxes are reduced ultimately costs are reduced and that benefits our customers.”

For example, customers in the company’s Eastern Massachusetts service territory will see a reduction in taxes of $47.6 million. This will cause a rate reduction of approximately $35.4 million, rather than the approved increase of $12.2 million (per the rate case decision Nov 30th). For Western Massachusetts, customers will benefit from a reduction in taxes of $8.3 million, reducing the approved increase of approximately $24.8 million to $16.5 million. -- Jan. 4, 2018 Eversource Energy press release

Georgia Power (Atlanta, Georgia) – Thanks to the tax cuts the utility will provide $1.2 billion in benefits for customers:

Georgia Power has completed an assessment of the impact of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act for the company – including approximately $1.2 billion in benefits for customers. The benefits were confirmed as part of an agreement with Georgia Public Service Commission (PSC) Staff and include approximately $130 million in reduced taxes on financing costs for the Vogtle nuclear expansion; $330 million in direct credits to customers as a result of lower federal income tax rates over the next two years and approximately $700 million in future benefits to be addressed in the company's next base rate case in 2019, which also includes the benefits of last week's reduction in state of Georgia income tax rates. If approved by the Georgia PSC, the typical residential customer using an average of 1,000 kilowatt-hours per month could receive approximately $70 in refunds over the two-year period.

"We are committed to offering the highest customer value with rates below the national average, and we're pleased to be able to continue to pass the benefits of the new tax laws on to our customers," said Paul Bowers, chairman, president and CEO of Georgia Power. "We appreciate the collaborative effort with Georgia PSC Staff to evaluate the new tax laws and reach a joint agreement, which we hope the Commission will review and approve as the best way to deliver benefits to customers as quickly as possible."

Today's announcement marks the second substantial, positive impact for Georgia Power customers tied to the new tax laws. In January, Georgia Power announced that customers would pay $139 million less than expected in 2018 for the Vogtle nuclear expansion currently under construction due to changes in federal tax laws and full receipt of the Toshiba parent guarantee payments. Beginning in April, the typical residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt-hours per month will pay $2.70 less than expected per month in financing costs for the Vogtle project. Additionally, Georgia Power bill credits totaling $188 million were approved by the Georgia PSC as part of its order to continue construction of Vogtle 3 & 4 as a direct result of the Toshiba parent guarantee payments for the Vogtle project. The credits, amounting to $75 per individual customer, will be distributed across three separate Georgia Power bills in 2018, with the first $25 credit appearing in the coming months. – March 6, 2018 Georgia Power article excerpt

Golden Heart Utilities (Fairbanks, Alaska) – The utility will pass tax cut savings along to customers:

In December, Congress passed new tax law that included a major cut to the corporate tax rate — to 21 percent from 35 percent. That will likely mean major savings for the small number of Alaska utilities that aren't cooperatives or municipally owned.

Those utilities include Enstar Natural Gas, which serves Anchorage, the Kenai Peninsula and Mat-Su; Alaska Electric Light and Power (AEL&P) in Juneau; and Golden Heart Utilities and College Utilities, water and sewer utilities in Fairbanks.– March 7, 2018 Anchorage Daily News article excerpt

Granite State Electric (Liberty Utilities) (Salem, New Hampshire) – The utility will pass along tax cuts savings to customers:

In this order, the Commission approves a distribution revenue decrease for Liberty Utilities, passing on to ratepayers the benefits of reduced corporate taxes resulting from recent changes to state and federal tax laws. This order also approves Liberty’s proposal to forego other distribution rate increases that were scheduled to take effect June 1, 2018, as a way to pass additional benefits of corporate tax reductions on to customers. – May 31, 2018, New Hampshire Public Utilities Commission Order excerpt

Green Mountain Power (Colchester, Vermont) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

In a filing today with the Vermont Public Utility Commission, Green Mountain Power is seeking to lower bills for customers by $6 million. The benefit comes from federal tax law changes that reduce GMP’s corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent. This change will be retroactive and take effect January 1, 2018 at the start of GMP’s new rate year. The reduction will be applied starting in the February bill cycle and will be returned monthly throughout 2018 as a bill credit.

“After the federal tax plan passed, GMP pledged to return 100% of the tax benefit to customers, and today’s letter sets in motion our plan to reduce rates to provide those savings to our customers immediately,” said President and CEO Mary Powell. “Keeping energy costs low and stable is a key focus at GMP and this decrease will help offset increased cost pressures in other areas outside of our control such as regional transmission costs.”

This rate reduction will help offset the recent rate increase that took effect in January. GMP customers will continue to see the benefits of the new, lower tax rate for as long as these rates are in effect because they will be reflected in future proposed energy rates. GMP is set to file its next rate case in April. – Jan. 23, 2018 Green Mountain Power press release

Gulf Power Company (Pensacola, Florida) – The utility will pass tax reform savings to customers:

Gulf Power has filed a request with the Florida Public Service Commission seeking approval to pass along approximately $103 million in tax savings to its 460,000 customers.

If approved, the average Gulf Power customer using 1,112 kilowatt hours per month would see a $14 drop on their monthly electricity bill for 2018 — the largest decrease in company history. More than $30 million in savings for customers will continue into 2019 and beyond if approved by the FPSC.

The tax savings are the result of federal tax reductions under the new Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which was signed into law on Dec. 22, and became effective Jan. 1. The decrease in the Corporate Tax Rate from 35 percent to 21 percent reduces the amount of federal income tax Gulf Power will have to pay and allows the energy provider to pass that savings along to customers. – Feb. 14, 2018 Pensacola News Journal article excerpt

Hawaiian Electric, Maui Electric, Hawai’I Electric Light (Honolulu, Hawaii) – The utility expects that rates will be lowered for customers thanks to tax reform:

The 460,000 customers of the Hawaiian Electric Companies could see lower electric bills as a result of the federal corporate income tax cut. Changes to federal tax law will lower corporate rates from 35 percent to 21 percent starting this year. That is expected to result in a lower tax bill for Hawaiian Electric, Maui Electric and Hawaiʽi Electric Light. State and federal taxes are included in the base electric rate and with a lower federal tax, the tax rate imbedded in the bill will be reduced. “We’re in the process of analyzing the impact of the tax overhaul but it’s pretty clear at this point that this will benefit most customers,” said Tayne Sekimura, senior vice president and chief financial officer of the Hawaiian Electric Companies. “We will work with our regulators and the Consumer Advocate to determine the exact amount of the tax reduction and the best way to pass on the savings.” Any change in the base rate is subject to the approval of the Public Utilities Commission, which will also determine the timing of any change in rates. – Jan. 10, 2018 Hawaiian Electric Press Release

Idaho Power (Boise, Idaho) – The utility requested to pass along tax reform savings to customers:

Idaho Power has filed a settlement agreement with the Idaho Public Utilities Commission (IPUC) that, if approved, will result in reduced rates for customers within the company’s Idaho service area in 2018 stemming from recent federal and Idaho state tax rate changes.

According to an agreement between Idaho Power, IPUC Staff and the Industrial Customers of Idaho Power, customers will see a total benefit associated with reduced tax expense of $33.9 million, provided through: 1) a base rate reduction of approximately $18.7 million, 2) an additional $7.8 million decrease that will be provided through the 2018 Power Cost Adjustment mechanism, and 3) a non-cash annual benefit of $7.4 million in the form of an offset to other deferred costs.

If the proposal is approved by the IPUC as filed, the typical Idaho residential customer using 950 kilowatt-hours (kWh) of energy per month will see a monthly bill decrease of $2.15, beginning June 1. – April 13, 2018, Idaho Power Press Release

Illinois American Water (Urbana, Illinois) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

The Federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act decreased the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent. On April 19, 2018, the Illinois Commerce Commission approved an order for Illinois utilities to pass savings from the national tax reform on to customers.

Illinois American Water is returning about $10.8 million to customers over the next 11 months.

Illinois American Water customers will see a credit on their May 2018 bill continuing through March 2019. After this initial 11-month timeframe, the credit amount will be reconciled and adjusted appropriately. The new credit amount will be communicated at that time.

According to Illinois American Water President Bruce Hauk, the credit to bills is a benefit provided through the financial model of a regulated investor-owned utility. He said, "We are pleased to be able to share this savings with our customers. In addition to this savings, our team works hard every day to control operational and maintenance costs so we can invest in our critical infrastructure and minimize impact to customer bills."

Depending on service area, Illinois American Water water service customers will see a credit on their bill for between about $1.39 a month to $2.35 a month. Wastewater service customers will see a credit on their bill between about $1.20 a month to $3.90 a month. – May 7, 2018, Business Wire article excerpt

Indiana-Michigan Power (Fort Wayne, Indiana) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

The Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission approved an order Wednesday allowing the Fort Wayne-based company to boost its Indiana customers’ rates about 7.3 percent, allowing it to raise $96.8 million in new revenue.

The Journal Gazette reports Indiana Michigan Power had initially sought a 20 percent rate increase to generate $263 million in new revenue.

That was reduced under a settlement between the company, Indiana’s state consumer advocate and several cities, companies and advocacy groups.

Some of the decrease was also attributed to the recent federal tax cuts. – May 31, 2018, AP article excerpt

Intermountain Gas (Idaho Falls, Idaho) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

State regulators have approved a rate decrease for customers of Intermountain Gas Company, to reflect the benefits of federal and state tax cuts.

The decision returns approximately $5.1 million to customers.

That is a 2.62-percent decrease for residential customers. It took effect June 1. - June 22, 2018 East Idaho News Excerpt

 

Iowa American Water Co. (Davenport, Iowa) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

And Iowa-American Water Co., which provides service in eastern Iowa, would provide $1.5 million and $1.8 million to customers. – Jan. 29, 2018 Des Moines Register article excerpt

ITC Holdings Corporation (Novi, Michigan) – The utility will pass tax reform savings to its customers:

ITC Holdings Corp. (ITC), the nation's largest independent electricity transmission company, today announced it is reducing its customer rates as a result of the lower federal corporate income tax rate the company received under the Tax Cuts & Jobs Act of 2017.

ITC's wholesale electricity customers throughout the Midcontinent Independent System Operator (MISO) region will see an 8-to-10 percent reduction in transmission rates, retroactive to January 1, 2018, beginning with bills for services provided in March. A similar reduction will be made to ITC's formula rate in the Southwest Power Pool region for future periods, effective back to January 1, 2018. – April 2, 2018 ITC Holdings Corporation article excerpt

Kansas City Power and Light (Kansas City, Missouri) -- The utility will pass savings from federal tax reform to customers:

Updated rates will include an approximate $100 million benefit to Kansas and Missouri Customers

Today KCP&L announced its intention to file rate update cases with the Kansas Corporation Commission (KCC) and the Missouri Public Service Commission (MPSC) to pass approximately $100 million in annual tax savings to customers, resulting from federal tax cost reductions. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which decreased the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent, was signed into law on Dec. 22, 2017 and became effective on Jan. 1, 2018. KCP&L is committed to passing 100 percent of the benefit from this tax cut on to customers.

"We commend both the KCC and the MPSC for already initiating a process to review the impact of the federal tax reduction," said Terry Bassham, President and CEO of KCP&L. "The federal tax cut has significant benefits which should be passed on to our customers in full. We look forward to working with our regulators and stakeholders on the best way to do that."

The full impact of this tax change will take several months to determine, as any proposed change to customer rates requires the approval of the KCC and MPSC. In addition, in determining how the tax reduction will impact rates, the company will request that regulators review and update all costs necessary to serve its customers. – Jan. 18, 2018 Kansas City Power and Light Press release

Kentucky Utilities (Louisville, Kentucky) - the utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

If approved by the commission, customers would see nearly $180 million in savings in the form of a reduction on the Environmental Surcharge line item on their bill in March, followed by a new line item credit on the bill based on energy consumption starting in April.

“We had been supportive of the Tax Act all along because of the savings for our residential and business customers, so we are pleased that the commission acted quickly to enable us to deliver these savings so expeditiously. The other parties to this case — the Kentucky Attorney General and the Kentucky Industrial Utility Customers — truly had the customer in mind and a willingness to work together to reach a mutually acceptable solution,” said Kent Blake, chief financial officer at LG&E and KU. “With the colder-than-average winter, and subsequent high energy use, these savings will come at a key time for our customers.”— Jan. 29, 2018 Louisville Gas and Electric Company and Kentucky Utilities Company, part of the PPL corporation press excerpt

Liberty Utilities  (Phoenix, Arizona) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

The Arizona Corporation Commission is following through on its promise to pass savings created by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act to Arizona utility ratepayers. As of August, the effort has totaled $189,088,437.

The Commission has been working on rate adjustments every month since February. At the July Open Meeting, the Commission addressed federal tax adjustments for both Southwest Gas and Liberty Utilities with adjustments made to their revenue requirements of $20 million and $1.9 million respectively. – August 24, Prescott News Online

Liberty Utilities-Empire District (Joplin, Missouri) - The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

The Missouri Public Service Commission approved a proposal to reduce rates by $17.8 million. The rate decrease reflects a reduction in the corporate tax rate from 35% to 21% as a result of passage of the federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017.

For a residential customer using 1,000 kWh (kilowatt-hours) of electricity a month, rates will decrease by approximately $5.16 a month. That decline is effective August 30.

Liberty Utilities-Empire District serves approximately 151,700 electric customers in the Missouri counties of Barry, Barton, Cedar, Christian, Dade, Dallas, Greene, Hickory, Jasper, Lawrence, McDonald, Newton, Polk, St. Clair, Stone and Taney. - August 16, 2018, KY3 News article excerpt

Louisville Gas and Electric Company (Louisville, Kentucky) – The utility will pass tax cut savings to customers:

If approved by the commission, customers would see nearly $180 million in savings in the form of a reduction on the Environmental Surcharge line item on their bill in March, followed by a new line item credit on the bill based on energy consumption starting in April.

“We had been supportive of the Tax Act all along because of the savings for our residential and business customers, so we are pleased that the commission acted quickly to enable us to deliver these savings so expeditiously. The other parties to this case — the Kentucky Attorney General and the Kentucky Industrial Utility Customers — truly had the customer in mind and a willingness to work together to reach a mutually acceptable solution,” said Kent Blake, chief financial officer at LG&E and KU. “With the colder-than-average winter, and subsequent high energy use, these savings will come at a key time for our customers.”— Jan. 29, 2018 Louisville Gas and Electric Company and Kentucky Utilities Company, part of the PPL corporation press excerpt

Madison Gas & Electric (Madison, Wisconsin) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

Madison Gas & Electric will return a one-time credit of $9.23 to its residential electric customers and $4.80 to natural gas customers by July 31. After that, electric bills will dip about $1.56 a month and gas bills by about $1 a month in 2018, MGE spokesman Steve Schultz said. That totals about $8 million worth of credits, according to PSC calculations.

The money represents excess taxes the companies have been collecting from ratepayers. Utility rates, set in advance, anticipated a 35 percent corporate tax rate. But Congress, in its tax reform package, lowered the rate to 21 percent. – May 26, 2018 Wisconsin State Journal article excerpt

Metropolitan Edison Company (Akron, OH) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

Michigan Gas Utilities Corp. (Monroe, Michigan) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today approved settlement agreements with seven utilities to pass on to ratepayers their savings from the federal tax law rewrite, beginning in July. Three other utilities had no impact from the changes.

Filings were approved for Alpena Power Co., DTE Gas Co., Michigan Gas Utilities Corp., Northern States Power, SEMCO Energy Gas Co., and Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corp. (UMERC).

---

"Through swift action by the Commission, Michigan ratepayers will experience millions of dollars in refunds on their utility bills starting this summer due to changes in federal corporate income taxes," said Sally Talberg, chairman of the MPSC. “Utilities are benefiting from the tax cuts and their customers should, too.” – May 30, 2018 LARA Public Service Commission Press Release excerpts

MidAmerican Energy Company (Des Moines, Iowa) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

Thanks to tax reform, utility bills will start going down soon. MidAmerican Energy says bills will be lowered for its Illinois customers starting in April, and probably for Iowa customers in May.

Spokeswoman Tina Hoffman says the company's tax rate dropped from 35 to 21 per cent, and as a result Illinois electric and natural gas customers will save about 50 dollars per year. The average Iowa customer would save 30 dollars.

But tax reform will affect more than just MidAmerican's corporate tax rate.

"And what we're proposing to do is create an account that captures these benefits that will help us in the long-term make sure that we reduce the size of even the need for future rate cases. So eventually that keeps rates low for customers well into the future."

Hoffman says the Illinois Commerce Commission has already approved the company's proposal and the savings should show up in residential bills this month. However the Iowa Utilities Board has not yet approved MidAmerican's proposal but she thinks it could lower Iowa bills beginning in May.  – April 2, 2018 WVIK Article

Minnesota Power (Duluth, Minnesota) – the utility will pass tax cut savings to customers:

"When final rates go into effect late this year, customers will start receiving a 1.5259% credit on their monthly bill through a new line item, called the tax cut rider, totaling about $10 million a year refund until our next rate case," Rutledge said.

For a $100 power bill, that's about $1.53 returned - Aug 10, 2018, Duluth News Tribune article excerpt

Missouri American Water (Joplin, Missouri) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

Officials also said the rates reflect $18 million in savings for customers because of the new federal tax cuts program. Missouri American is the first regulated water and sewer company in the state to adjust its customer rates based on the tax cuts. – May 16, 2018, News-PressNow article excerpt

Montana-Dakota Utilities Co. (Bismarck, North Dakota) – the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

MDU requested a smaller interim natural gas rate increase that would reduce residential customers’ bills by $1 per month. It sought to reduce its interim rate increase from 12.5 percent to 7.4 percent. – February 27, 2018 Bismarck Tribune article excerpt

National Fuel Gas Distribution Corporation (Erie, Pennsylvania) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

National Grid (Waltham, Massachusetts) – The utility plans to pass along tax savings to customers:

On the heels of expansive federal tax reform, National Grid will request a reduction in its pending natural gas distribution rate proposal with the Massachusetts Department of Public Utilities.

When federal tax reform legislation was signed into law in late December, the company began assessing how reductions in corporate tax rates could benefit customers. The company announced today it will update its rate proposal with the DPU for natural gas rates that will go into effect in October 2018: reducing the original $87 million request to an estimated $51 million.

“We are committed to ensuring that the tax savings of the legislation are fully realized and are used to help our customers in their energy bills,” said Cordi O’Hara, president and COO of National Grid in Massachusetts. “We’ll continue to seek opportunities to provide this benefit to all of our customers.” – Jan. 11, 2018 National Grid press release

National Grid Rhode Island (Providence, Rhode Island) – The utility plans to pass along tax savings to customers:

National Grid Rhode Island announced today that it is reducing its electric and gas base distribution rate proposal with the Rhode Island Public Utilities Commission (RIPUC) by more than $25 million.  Last November, National Grid had put forth its first proposal since 2012 asking the RIPUC to adjust its base distribution rates for both gas and electric customers. Since that time, National Grid has been assessing how the newly passed federal tax reform legislation that was signed into law in late December could benefit our customers.

“Today’s announcement is a key indicator of how this new tax law can provide real benefits to National Grid’s customers,” said Tim Horan, president and COO of National Grid in Rhode Island.  “We are committed to ensuring that the tax savings of the legislation are fully realized and are used to help our customers in their energy bills.” -- Jan. 11, 2018 National Grid press release

Nevada Energy (Las Vegas, Nevada) – The utility is passing tax reform savings to customers:

Effective April 1, 2018, we are passing on to you a monthly savings as a result of federal tax reform – Excerpt from NVEnergy’s Energy Pricing Plans

New Jersey American Water (Swedesboro, New Jersey) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

New Jersey American Water customers also recently had a rate decrease as a result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. On April 1, 2018, most customer water rates were reduced by 5.9 percent (and 2.3 percent for former Shorelands Water Company customers). The water bill for the average residential customer using 6,000 gallons a month decreased approximately $3.36 per month ($1.00 per month for former Shorelands customers), and the average residential wastewater bill decreased between $1.49 and $5.81 per month, depending on service area.

The BPU is continuing their review of the overall impact of the new tax act, and further rate adjustments are anticipated in the coming months. – May 11, 2018, BusinessWire article excerpt

New Jersey Natural Gas (Wall, New Jersey) – The utility will pass tax reform savings to customers:

New Jersey Natural Gas (NJNG), a regulated subsidiary of New Jersey Resources (NYSE: NJR), today submitted a filing to the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities (BPU) to pass through the benefits of the recently enacted federal tax reform to customers. NJNG announced it will reduce customers’ rates by $21 million, effective April 1, 2018, resulting in a $31, or 3 percent, decrease to a typical residential heating customer’s annual bill.

NJNG also announced it will provide a one-time refund to customers totaling approximately $31 million. The estimated refund for a typical residential heat customer is $47. The actual refund amounts will be determined in May and reflect individual customer usage. Pending BPU approval, customers can expect to see these savings in their May or June bills.

For the rate decrease, a typical residential heating customer using 1,000 therms a year will see their annual bill go from $1,054 to $1,023, a savings of $31. When combined with the one-time refund, the customer will see an overall reduction of $78 or 7.4 percent this year. This adjustment will help ensure rates reflect the lower tax structure and any appropriate savings are passed on to customers.

“Our top priority is to ensure we deliver safe, reliable and affordable service to our customers, said Laurence M. Downes, chairman and CEO of New Jersey Resources. “We are pleased to pass along the benefits of tax reform to our customers through lower energy bills.” –
March 2, 2018 New Jersey Resources press release excerpt  

Nicor Gas (Naperville, Illinois) – The utility will pass on tax reform savings to customers:

Nicor Gas customers can expect their rates to go down about $1.73 a month, effective in early May, the company said.

The Illinois Commerce Commission has approved a reduction of Nicor Gas' distribution rates totaling $43.6 million. The reduction stems from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, which lowered Nicor Gas' annual tax expense, according to a statement.

“We are pleased to share that benefit with our customers," said Nicor Gas President Melvin D. Williams – May 3, 2018 Daily Herald article excerpt

Northern Indiana Public Service Company (Merrillville, Indiana) – The utility requested that customers’ natural gas rates be lowered:

As a result of the newly enacted federal tax reform, NIPSCO submitted a request with the Indiana Utility Regulatory Commission (IURC) to lower its previous request to modify natural gas base rates by $26 million. The reduction means natural gas residential customers would pay nearly $2 less per month following the Commissions’ decision in the company’s natural gas rate proposal, which is expected in the second half of 2018. The average natural gas residential customer paying $50 per month is projected to see their bill go to $58.10 per month, subject to IURC approval, rather than $59.80 as originally proposed. Electric rate benefits from federal tax reform are being considered and reviewed separately. NIPSCO’s original proposal, which was made last September, is four months into a formal regulatory review process, which includes opportunities for public input and involvement. According to the IURC’s monthly residential bill comparisons, NIPSCO is currently the lowest natural gas cost provider in Indiana.” — Jan. 29, 2018 Northern Indiana Public Service Company press release

Northern States Power (Minneapolis, Minnesota) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today approved settlement agreements with seven utilities to pass on to ratepayers their savings from the federal tax law rewrite, beginning in July. Three other utilities had no impact from the changes.

Filings were approved for Alpena Power Co., DTE Gas Co., Michigan Gas Utilities Corp., Northern States Power, SEMCO Energy Gas Co., and Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corp. (UMERC).

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"Through swift action by the Commission, Michigan ratepayers will experience millions of dollars in refunds on their utility bills starting this summer due to changes in federal corporate income taxes," said Sally Talberg, chairman of the MPSC. “Utilities are benefiting from the tax cuts and their customers should, too.” – May 30, 2018 LARA Public Service Commission Press Release excerpts

NorthWestern Energy (Butte, Montana) – The utility will pass tax reform savings to its customers:

The tax savings stem from the Republican Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which Congress passed in December and was signed into law by President Donald Trump. Federal corporate tax rates fell from 35 percent to 21 percent.

Regulated utilities like NorthWestern cannot pocket the savings, which must be shared with ratepayers, who also pay the utilities' taxes. NorthWestern has about 345,000 customers in Montana. 

NorthWestern is proposing that its natural gas customers receive direct refunds for the entire $3.154 million in tax breaks associated with the utility’s natural gas business. The company’s electric customers would receive half of the $10.8 million in tax breaks associated with NorthWestern’s electric business. Half the money would be spent removing hazard trees that pose a fire or outage risk.

“With what we proposed, for a natural gas customer, it would be about $1.18 a month. An electricity customer would be 67 cents per month,” said Butch Larcombe, NorthWestern spokesman. – April 3, 2018 Billings Gazette article excerpt

Oklahoma Gas and Electric Company (Oklahoma City, Oklahoma) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

Oklahoma Gas and Electric, a subsidiary of Oklahoma City-based OGE Energy Corp. (NYSE: OGE), announced today that it has asked the Oklahoma Corporation Commission to review the company's request to recover its approximately $390 million investment in the Mustang Energy Center, the first, new, natural-gas fired plant the company has built in more than 30 years. The new plant includes seven, modern quick-start natural-gas turbines that replaced two of the oldest natural gas-fired units in the country.

The company initially planned to seek a rate increase of about $70 million per year to recover its investment. Following President Donald Trump's signing of federal tax reform in December 2017, the company delayed its filing from late December to  today to adjust its proposed filing to ensure customers benefitted from the lower corporate tax rate. The company is now seeking just under $2 million per year, and the average Oklahoma residential customer will see no monthly bill increase. OG&E's rates today are 24 percent below the national average, placing them among the lowest in the country.  

"The president's signing of tax reform in December was fortuitous for customer and the company," said OG&E spokesman Brian Alford. "When it became evident in November that tax reform was a real possibility, we began having conversations at the Oklahoma Corporation Commission about incorporating the benefits of tax  reform into our upcoming filing. Today's filing reflects those benefits as well as our ongoing efforts to manage costs, which provide customers with a modern, highly efficient power plant at virtually no impact on monthly electric bills."  – Jan. 16, 2018 Oklahoma Gas & Electric Company press release

Oncor Electric Delivery (Dallas, Texas) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

The company delivering electricity to most North Texans would likely save millions from the new corporate tax rate cut. But that entire windfall is expected to go back to consumers.

That's the result of a recently completed rate case where the state's largest regulated utility agreed to return all tax cut benefits to its customers.

The $1.5-trillion tax overhaul hadn't been completed when Oncor's rate negotiation with the regulator was settled. And the Public Utility Commission of Texas, the agency that regulates the operations of electricity-distribution companies like Oncor, made sure to cover the possibility of a tax cut. 

"Oncor will work with the PUCT to determine the best way to distribute those savings back to customers," said spokesman Geoff Bailey via email. "In short, we are capturing these tax savings for future refunds to our customers."  Jan. 16, 2018 Dallas Morning News article excerpt

One Gas Inc. (Tulsa, Oklahoma) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

One Gas is required to pass along corporate tax savings to utility customers, and the company established a related regulatory liability for the difference between what the company's tax obligations are and how much customers are paying. The liability resulted in a $12.3 million reduction in first-quarter revenue, company officials said during a May 1 earnings conference call. – May 7, 2018, SNL Gas Week article excerpt

Otter Tail Power Co. (Fergus Falls, Minnesota) – the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

Otter Tail sought to reduce its interim electric rate increase from 10.4 percent to 6.8 percent. Typical residential customers would see a reduction of about $3.10 a month, a company spokeswoman said, and business customers would see an $18.25 drop.

“Federal corporate incomes taxes are a cost of service to our customers,” Otter Tail said in its request. “The reduction of the federal corporate income tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent reduces Otter Tail’s cost of providing service.” – February 27, 2018 Bismarck Tribune article excerpt

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (San Francisco, California) - the utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

PG&E is taking action to pass along approximately $450 million in annual tax savings to its customers. As a first step, today PG&E made three separate filings requesting to pass along approximately $325 million per year in federal tax savings from the  federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act for 2018 and 2019. PG&E has proposed to the CPUC that the benefits of the federal tax savings be used to offset expected rate increases. - March 30, 2018, PG&E Press Release

 

Pacific Power (Portland, Oregon) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

The new Republican tax plan has brought a variety of tax cuts. Pacific Power says they are committed to passing the benefit of this tax cut on to customers.

“We strive to provide our customers reliable service while keeping rates low," said Stefan Bird, President and CEO of Pacific Power. “The benefit of this tax cut should be passed on to our customers – and we will work with our regulators and stakeholders on the best way to do that.” – Jan. 3, 2018 My Columbia Basin article excerpt

PacifiCorp (Draper, Utah) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

Utah regulators have approved changes to PacifiCorp's electric service rates, reducing them by $61 million through the remainder of this year due to federal tax reform.

Changes in federal tax law passed in December 2017 will reduce rates for customers of PacifiCorp's Rocky Mountain Power division in Utah by a 4.7% overall average, according to the Berkshire Hathaway Energy subsidiary. The Utah Public Service Commission on April 27 ordered the rate cuts to take effect on May 1. PacifiCorp said the average residential customer using 698 kWh a month would see a "tax cut adjustment" on their bill of about $4.17.

PECO Energy Company (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

Pennsylvania Electric Company (Akron, Ohio) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

Pennsylvania Power Company (Akron, Ohio) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

Pennsylvania-American Water Company (Hershey, Pennsylvania) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

Pennsylvania-American Water Company-Wastewater (Hershey, Pennsylvania) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

Peoples Gas Company LLC (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

Peoples Natural Gas Company LLC-Equitable Division (Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

Pepco (Washington, DC) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

Pepco today announced they will file with the Public Service Commission of the  District of Columbia in early February, outlining plans to provide annual tax savings to more than 296,000 electric customers in the District of Columbia. If approved, Pepco would plan to begin providing a credit lowering customer bills starting in the first quarter of 2018.       

The tax savings are the result of federal tax reductions under the new Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which was signed into law on Dec. 22, 2017, and became effective on Jan. 1, 2018. The decrease in the Corporate Tax Rate from 35 percent to 21 percent reduces the amount of federal income tax Pepco will have to pay. 

“The tax law will result in lower bills for our customers and lower taxes for Pepco,” said Dave Velazquez, President and CEO, Pepco Holdings, which includes Pepco. – Jan. 5, 2018 Pepco press release

Piedmont Natural Gas Company (Nashville, Tennessee) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

During the Conference, the Commissioners voted unanimously to require Atmos Energy Corporation ("Atmos Energy"), Chattanooga Gas Company ("Chattanooga Gas"), Kingsport Power Company d/b/a AEP Appalachian Power ("Kingsport Power"), Piedmont Natural Gas Company ("Piedmont Natural Gas"), and Tennessee American Water Company ("Tennessee American Water"), to immediately apply deferred accounting treatment, specifically described herein, with respect to the impact of the lowering of the federal corporate income tax rate and to require the named public utilities to provide to the Commission no later than March 31, 2018, the amounts deferred and a proposal to reduce rates or otherwise make adjustments to account for the tax benefits resulting from the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, Pub. L. No. 115-97 ("2017 Tax Act"). – February 6, 2018, Tennessee Public Utility Commission Report excerpt

Pike County Light & Power Company (Milford, Pennsylvania) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

Potomac Edison (Martinsburg, West Virginia) - The utility is passing on tax savings to customers:

‘More than 85,000 Potomac Edison customers in the Eastern Panhandle should see lower bills in the coming weeks thanks to federal tax reforms adopted in December.

The West Virginia Public Service Commission announced Friday that it approved rate reduction settlements for utility companies totaling almost $85 million annually, starting next month.

"Bottom line: starting Sept. 1, the tax reduction will lower bills for typical ... residential customers by nearly $2 per month," FirstEnergy spokesman Todd Meyers wrote in an email on Friday. FirstEnergy is the parent company of Potomac Edison.

"That means our average residential customer using 1,000 kilowatt-hours per month will see their monthly (bill) fall to $108.25 from $110.22,"  - August 24, 2018, Herald Mail Media

PPL Electric Utilities Corporation (Allentown, Pennsylvania) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

Public Service Company of New Mexico (Albuquerque, New Mexico) – The utility will pass tax reform savings to customers:

The company will gain about $48 million from the lowering of the corporate income tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent. It will pass those gains onto consumers starting this year as part of Public Service Co. of New Mexico’s latest rate case that concluded in December, allowing PNM to lower its newest rate hike to just 1.4 percent. – Feb. 27, 2018 Albuquerque Journal article excerpt

Public Service Company of Oklahoma (Tulsa, Oklahoma) - the utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

A recommendation the judge filed in the case states evidence and testimony indicates the company accumulated the income thanks to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act approved by Congress at the end of 2017.

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“The tax cut provides an opportunity for real savings for customers, especially during the summer months when energy usage rises along with the temperature," Hunter stated in a release. "We hope the members of the Oklahoma Corporation Commission complete their review as quickly as possible to benefit PSO customers.” - June 29, 2018, NewsOk article excerpts

Public Service Enterprise Group (Newark, New Jersey) – the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

Public Service Electric and Gas Co. (PSE&G) today proposed to lower customer bills by approximately 2 percent on April 1 to pass on the benefits of the federal tax reform legislation enacted earlier this year.

In its filing with the NJ Board of Public Utilities, PSE&G will reduce rates by approximately $114 million on an annual basis effective April 1 to reflect lower federal taxes the utility will pay. The typical residential combined electric and gas customer will save nearly $41 per year.  – March 2, 2018, PSE&G Press Release

Puget Sound Energy Inc. (Bellevue, Washington) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

Washington state utility regulators approved electric rate reductions for Puget Sound Energy Inc. totaling $108.5 million for 2018, with two-thirds of that amount reflecting cuts to the company's federal corporate income tax rate.

The federal tax overhaul of 2017 lowered the utility's corporate income tax return from 35% to 21%, and the Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission determined that the financial benefit should be passed on to the company's customers. Those customers will continue to see the benefits of the tax rate reduction in the years ahead as well because the regulators also agreed to cut Puget Sound Energy's, or PSE's, annual base electric rates by $72.9 million. – May 7, 2018, SNL Electric Utility Report

Quadvest (Tomball, Texas) – the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

"On behalf of the approximately 30,000 customers Quadvest Utility serves in Southeast Texas, we would like to thank you for your integral part in the development and ultimate passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of FY2017. The passage of this key piece of legislation has allowed Quadvest to proactively reduce our customers' base water and sewer fees by 26% or almost $90 per year/family." – Simon Sequeira, President of Quadvest

Quail Creek (Phoenix, Arizona) – The utility will pass tax savings on to customers:

The Arizona Corporation Commission is following through on its promise to pass savings created by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act to Arizona utility ratepayers. As of August, the effort has totaled $189,088,437.

At the August Open Meeting, the Commission addressed tax adjustments for both the Quail Creek and Bermuda Water Companies. The largest tax adjustment occurred earlier this year when the Commission approved a $119 million dollar reduction to benefit APS customers. - August 24, Prescott News Online

Roanoke Gas (Roanoke, Virginia) – The utility will pass tax cut savings on to customers:

The legislation cuts the federal corporate income tax rate from 35% to 21% effective January 1, 2018. This tax cut, in turn, reduces the cost of service for many of Virginia’s major electric, gas and water utilities. Utility rates paid by customers are based on the cost of service.

To preserve the savings from this tax cut for customers, the Commission ordered all applicable Virginia utilities to account for the tax savings by accruing a regulatory liability on the utility’s books. The tax savings will thus be quantified and available to be passed on to customers in subsequent rate proceedings.

The utilities subject to the Commission’s order serve millions of Virginia residential and business customers. They include Virginia-American Water Company; Aqua Virginia, Inc.; Washington Gas Light; Columbia Gas of Virginia; Virginia Natural Gas; Roanoke Gas; Atmos Energy; Southwestern Virginia Gas; Appalachian Natural Gas Distribution; Kentucky Utilities; Appalachian Power Company; and Virginia Electric and Power Company. –January 8, 2018, Virginia SCC Press Release

Rocky Mountain Power (Portland, Oregon) – The utility company will pass along tax savings to customers:

Rocky Mountain Power says it plans to pass some of its federal tax savings on to customers. But, the company isn't sure how much or when.

"We strive to provide our customers reliable service while keeping rates low," said Cindy Crane, President and CEO of Rocky Mountain Power. "The benefit of this tax cut should be passed on to our customers — and we will work with our regulators and stakeholders on the best way to do that." – Jan. 4, 2018 Local News 8 article excerpt

SEMCO Energy Gas Co. (Port Huron, Michigan) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today approved settlement agreements with seven utilities to pass on to ratepayers their savings from the federal tax law rewrite, beginning in July. Three other utilities had no impact from the changes.

Filings were approved for Alpena Power Co., DTE Gas Co., Michigan Gas Utilities Corp., Northern States Power, SEMCO Energy Gas Co., and Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corp. (UMERC).

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"Through swift action by the Commission, Michigan ratepayers will experience millions of dollars in refunds on their utility bills starting this summer due to changes in federal corporate income taxes," said Sally Talberg, chairman of the MPSC. “Utilities are benefiting from the tax cuts and their customers should, too.” – May 30, 2018 LARA Public Service Commission Press Release excerpts

Southwest Gas (Las Vegas, Nevada) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

Southwest Gas said its rate request incorporates reduced tax liability associated with the 2017 federal tax overhaul, which cut the corporate tax rate to 21%, among other changes. The tax cuts partially offset the rate increase the utility is requesting, the company said. June 1, 2018 SNL Financial article excerpt

Spire Inc. (St. Louis, Missouri) – The utility will pass tax reform savings to customers:

Typical residential customers in western Missouri will see their Spire natural gas bill decrease slightly by approximately 40 cents per month. This includes a decrease to the monthly customer charge from $23 to $20. Spire bills remain lower than a decade ago even while the company has upgraded hundreds of miles of pipeline since joining the Spire family five years ago.

These savings are due primarily to the recent growth of Spire and federal tax reform. – March 22, 2018 Western Missouri press release excerpt

Typical residential customers in the St. Louis area will see their Spire natural gas bill decrease by approximately $2 per month. Spire bills remain lower than a decade ago, even while the company has upgraded hundreds of miles of pipeline across the region.

These savings are due primarily to the recent growth of Spire and federal tax reform. – March 22, 2018 Eastern Missouri press release excerpt

Suez Water Idaho Inc. (Boise, Idaho) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

“A main feature of the tax law that took effect Jan. 1 was to reduce the federal corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent,” noted one such release, from the Idaho Public Utilities Commission. “Soon after the federal law took effect, Idaho Governor C.L. ‘Butch’ Otter signed into law House Bill 463, reducing the state’s corporate tax rate from 7.4 percent to 6.925 percent. Since a utility’s tax expenses are a factor in determining customer rates, the Commission directed all regulated utilities in the state with more than 200 customers to report the financial benefits of the law and how it planned to pass those benefits along to customers.”

Utility rate reductions are as follows:

Avista – 5.3 percent for electricity and 6.1 percent for natural gas

Idaho Power – 7.06 percent

Intermountain Gas – 2.62 percent

Rocky Mountain Power – 1 percent

Suez Water Idaho Inc. – 5.6 percent - June 19, 2018 Idaho Business Review Excerpt

 

Superior Water, Light & Power (Superior, Wisconsin) – the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

Residential customers of Superior Water, Light & Power will receive a $31.80 lump-sum credit on July bills as a result of savings accrued from the tax law Congress passed last year, according to an order issued Thursday by the Public Service Commission.

Customers in all categories will receive lump-sum and ongoing credits for each provided service. The largest electrical customer will receive a $61,807 lump sum credit and other non-residential customers will receive lump-sum electric credits varying from $13.70 to $3,106 depending on customer classification, according to the PSC order.

SWL&P estimated its total customer credits this year at $1.322 million. – May 29, 2018, Superior Telegram article excerpt

Tampa Electric (Tampa, Florida) – The utility is passing tax reform savings to customers:

Tampa Electric bills won’t rise to pay for Hurricane Irma restoration costs, thanks to new tax savings. The Florida Public Service Commission (PSC) unanimously approved the measure today.

Because of recent changes made to the federal tax law, customers will directly benefit. What Tampa Electric would have paid in corporate income taxes will instead be used to cover the cost of restoring power after Hurricane Irma and several other earlier named storms. Additionally, Tampa Electric bills will reflect the ongoing benefits from tax reform starting in 2019. – March 1, 2018, Tampa Electric Press Release

Tennessee American Water Company (Chattanooga, Tennessee) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

During the Conference, the Commissioners voted unanimously to require Atmos Energy Corporation ("Atmos Energy"), Chattanooga Gas Company ("Chattanooga Gas"), Kingsport Power Company d/b/a AEP Appalachian Power ("Kingsport Power"), Piedmont Natural Gas Company ("Piedmont Natural Gas"), and Tennessee American Water Company ("Tennessee American Water"), to immediately apply deferred accounting treatment, specifically described herein, with respect to the impact of the lowering of the federal corporate income tax rate and to require the named public utilities to provide to the Commission no later than March 31, 2018, the amounts deferred and a proposal to reduce rates or otherwise make adjustments to account for the tax benefits resulting from the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, Pub. L. No. 115-97 ("2017 Tax Act"). – February 6, 2018, Tennessee Public Utility Commission Report excerpt

The United Illuminating Company (New Haven, Connecticut) – The utility will pass tax reform savings to customers.

Tucson Electric Power Company (Tucson, Arizona) – The utility will pass tax reform savings to customers:

EP and its sister utilities “believe it is in the public interest to share a substantial portion of the expected income tax savings with their respective customers on an expedited basis,” the companies said.

TEP says its proposals may include a fast-tracked regulatory approval process to implement a billing credit as soon as possible; a higher seasonal credit that would help offset customer bills during higher usage months; or bill credits that would decline over time while still smoothing the bill impacts of future rate requests. – Feb. 2, 2018 Tucson.com article excerpt

UGI Central Penn Gas Inc. (Shippensburg, Pennsylvania) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

UGI Penn Natural Gas Inc. (Valley Forge, Pennsylvania) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

UGI Utilities Inc. (Valley Forge, Pennsylvania) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

Unitil (Fitchburg, Massachusetts) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

Unitil, which serves about 45,000 electric and gas customers in Massachusetts, said it expects to rebate customers about $1.6 million in tax savings. The company, which owns Fitchburg Gas and Electric Light Company, is one of the few utilities that isn’t seeking a rate increase this year. - June 30, 2018, The Daily News article excerpt

Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corp. (UMERC) (Iron Mountain, Michigan) - The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

The Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) today approved settlement agreements with seven utilities to pass on to ratepayers their savings from the federal tax law rewrite, beginning in July. Three other utilities had no impact from the changes.

Filings were approved for Alpena Power Co., DTE Gas Co., Michigan Gas Utilities Corp., Northern States Power, SEMCO Energy Gas Co., and Upper Michigan Energy Resources Corp. (UMERC).

---

"Through swift action by the Commission, Michigan ratepayers will experience millions of dollars in refunds on their utility bills starting this summer due to changes in federal corporate income taxes," said Sally Talberg, chairman of the MPSC. “Utilities are benefiting from the tax cuts and their customers should, too.” – May 30, 2018 LARA Public Service Commission Press Release excerpts

Upper Peninsula Power Company (Marquette, Michigan) – The utility will pass tax reform savings to its customers:

The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) was passed into law at the end of 2017, effectively lowering corporate tax rates from 35 percent to 21 percent. Upper Peninsula Power Company (UPPCO) is requesting approval of a proposal that would pass along the savings attributable to the TCJA to its customers. UPPCO’s proposal was filed with the Michigan Public Service Commission (MPSC) on March 30th as part of the process that is required by the state for determining how the benefits of the TCJA are to be credited to the utility’s customers.

“Under our plan, a typical residential customer consuming 500 kilowatt hours per month will see a reduction of approximately $1.30 on their monthly bills,” said Brett French, Vice-President of Business Development and Communications. “This is in addition to approximately $7 in monthly savings currently being seen by a typical residential customer because of the steps we implemented in January. We anticipate our customers will begin to see the additional savings later this summer after the MPSC approves our plan.” – April 2, 2018 WLUC News article excerpt

Vermont Gas Systems, Inc. (South Burlington, Vermont) – The utility will pass savings from tax reform to customers:

Vermont Gas announced today that it will reduce 2018 customer costs by $2.4 million, the full benefit of December’s federal tax law changes. Vermont Gas has filed a notice with the Vermont Public Utility Commission to give customers a monthly credit on 2018 bills, starting February 1st and continuing through October 2018. Each of Vermont Gas’ 51,000 customers will receive a credit on their heating bill, based on usage, over the next eight months. For families, this bill credit will total almost $40 over the year; businesses could see even more.

“Our commitment to our customers is to maintain affordable and competitive rates, while offering top-rate customer service. We are so pleased to return the full benefit of this new federal tax reduction to every family and business this year,” said Don Rendall, President and CEO of Vermont Gas. “Our customers will start to see a reduction in their heating bills next month and with the recent bitterly cold weather we’ve been experiencing, this money will be a welcomed relief.”

While each customer’s total savings will vary depending on their actual usage, the average residential customer’s annual bill will be almost $40 lower because of this change. Businesses could receive hundreds, or thousands of dollars credited over the course of the year, depending on usage.

“As a Vermont Gas customer at my home and for my downtown hair salon, I’m always looking for ways to save money,” said Glenn Brown, Burlington resident and owner of Chop Shop Hair Design. “I’m excited that Vermont Gas is passing along the tax credit to customers – every little bit helps this time of year.”

 “We’re pleased to return this money to customers because we know how important it is for everyone to keep costs in check, especially during the winter months,” Rendall continued. “Natural gas is already the cleanest and most affordable heating choice for over 51,000 families and businesses and we know these savings will help.” – Jan. 23, 2018 Vermont Gas Systems, Inc. press release excerpt

Virginia American Water Company (Alexandria, Virginia) – The utility will pass tax cut savings on to customers:

The legislation cuts the federal corporate income tax rate from 35% to 21% effective January 1, 2018. This tax cut, in turn, reduces the cost of service for many of Virginia’s major electric, gas and water utilities. Utility rates paid by customers are based on the cost of service.

To preserve the savings from this tax cut for customers, the Commission ordered all applicable Virginia utilities to account for the tax savings by accruing a regulatory liability on the utility’s books. The tax savings will thus be quantified and available to be passed on to customers in subsequent rate proceedings.

The utilities subject to the Commission’s order serve millions of Virginia residential and business customers. They include Virginia-American Water Company; Aqua Virginia, Inc.; Washington Gas Light; Columbia Gas of Virginia; Virginia Natural Gas; Roanoke Gas; Atmos Energy; Southwestern Virginia Gas; Appalachian Natural Gas Distribution; Kentucky Utilities; Appalachian Power Company; and Virginia Electric and Power Company. –January 8, 2018, Virginia SCC Press Release

Virginia Electric and Power Company (Richmond, Virginia) – The utility will pass tax cut savings on to customers:

The legislation cuts the federal corporate income tax rate from 35% to 21% effective January 1, 2018. This tax cut, in turn, reduces the cost of service for many of Virginia’s major electric, gas and water utilities. Utility rates paid by customers are based on the cost of service.

To preserve the savings from this tax cut for customers, the Commission ordered all applicable Virginia utilities to account for the tax savings by accruing a regulatory liability on the utility’s books. The tax savings will thus be quantified and available to be passed on to customers in subsequent rate proceedings.

The utilities subject to the Commission’s order serve millions of Virginia residential and business customers. They include Virginia-American Water Company; Aqua Virginia, Inc.; Washington Gas Light; Columbia Gas of Virginia; Virginia Natural Gas; Roanoke Gas; Atmos Energy; Southwestern Virginia Gas; Appalachian Natural Gas Distribution; Kentucky Utilities; Appalachian Power Company; and Virginia Electric and Power Company. –January 8, 2018, Virginia SCC Press Release

Virginia Natural Gas (Virginia Beach, Virginia) – The utility will pass tax cut savings on to customers:

The legislation cuts the federal corporate income tax rate from 35% to 21% effective January 1, 2018. This tax cut, in turn, reduces the cost of service for many of Virginia’s major electric, gas and water utilities. Utility rates paid by customers are based on the cost of service.

To preserve the savings from this tax cut for customers, the Commission ordered all applicable Virginia utilities to account for the tax savings by accruing a regulatory liability on the utility’s books. The tax savings will thus be quantified and available to be passed on to customers in subsequent rate proceedings.

The utilities subject to the Commission’s order serve millions of Virginia residential and business customers. They include Virginia-American Water Company; Aqua Virginia, Inc.; Washington Gas Light; Columbia Gas of Virginia; Virginia Natural Gas; Roanoke Gas; Atmos Energy; Southwestern Virginia Gas; Appalachian Natural Gas Distribution; Kentucky Utilities; Appalachian Power Company; and Virginia Electric and Power Company. –January 8, 2018, Virginia SCC Press Release

Washington Gas Light (Washington, DC) – The utility will pass tax cut savings on to customers:

The legislation cuts the federal corporate income tax rate from 35% to 21% effective January 1, 2018. This tax cut, in turn, reduces the cost of service for many of Virginia’s major electric, gas and water utilities. Utility rates paid by customers are based on the cost of service.

To preserve the savings from this tax cut for customers, the Commission ordered all applicable Virginia utilities to account for the tax savings by accruing a regulatory liability on the utility’s books. The tax savings will thus be quantified and available to be passed on to customers in subsequent rate proceedings.

The utilities subject to the Commission’s order serve millions of Virginia residential and business customers. They include Virginia-American Water Company; Aqua Virginia, Inc.; Washington Gas Light; Columbia Gas of Virginia; Virginia Natural Gas; Roanoke Gas; Atmos Energy; Southwestern Virginia Gas; Appalachian Natural Gas Distribution; Kentucky Utilities; Appalachian Power Company; and Virginia Electric and Power Company. –January 8, 2018, Virginia SCC Press Release

We Energies (Milwaukee, Wisconsin) – the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

We Energies electric customers will receive a one-time credit in July and a slight decrease in electric rates in subsequent months from a portion of the savings from the company's lower federal corporate tax rate, state regulators decided on Thursday.

The Public Service Commission determined that 20 percent of the immediate savings from the lower tax rate should be passed on to customers.

The remaining 80 percent of the savings will go toward paying down deferred costs that stood at $424.5 million as of Dec. 31 but that are not included in current rates.

"It will be a win-win for our customers — providing an immediate bill credit while also helping to reduce future rate increases," Cathy Schulze, a We Energies spokeswoman, said in an email.   - April 26, 2018, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel article excerpt

Wellsboro Electric Company (Wellsboro, Pennsylvania) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

West Penn Power Company (Greensburg, Pennsylvania) - the utility will pass along tax reform savings to customers:

The Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PUC) today issued an Order, requiring a “negative surcharge” or monthly credit on customer bills for 17 major electric, natural gas, and water and wastewater utilities, totaling more than $320-million per year. The refunds to consumers are the result of the substantial decrease in federal corporate tax rates and other tax changes under the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) of 2017, which impacted the tax liability of many utilities.

Additionally, the PUC will consider the effects of federal tax reform on seven other public utilities as part of the investigations for rate cases which have already been filed or are expected to be filed by Aug. 1, 2018. In those situations, the Commission has directed the parties involved to address the impact of any TCJA tax savings as part of the overall rate design for each utility. – May 17, 2018, Pennsylvania Public Utilities Commission Press Release

WeStar Energy (Topeka, Kansas) – The utility will pass along tax savings to customers:

Today Westar Energy announced it will file a request before the Kansas Corporation Commission (KCC) to reflect in its electricity rates the full amount of tax savings from the change in the federal tax law. Westar said that a detailed application is being prepared and will be filed later this month or early February. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which decreased the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent, was signed into law on Dec. 22, 2017, and became effective Jan. 1, 2018. 

“We agree with the KCC Staff and others that all these tax benefits should go to our customers,” said Mark Ruelle, President and CEO of Westar. “This application to update rates starts that process.”

All utility rate changes must be approved by the KCC. That process typically takes a few months to review and confirm. While the company estimated the tax benefit to be $65 million annually, or more, the KCC Staff and other parties will confirm the precise figures before the KCC.  In addition to passing through the benefit of lower tax rates, regulators will review and update all other costs to provide electricity.”— Jan. 18, 2018 WeStar Energy press release

West Virginia American Water (Charleston, West Virginia) – The utility will pass tax savings on to customers:

West Virginia American Water Company announced a settlement plan last week which — if approved by the PSC — would result in an average savings of $3.77 a month for water and sewer customers in the state.

“The recent federal tax reform will save our customers an estimated $4.6 million annually, so we are passing these savings on to our customers beginning next month,” Brian Bruce, president of West Virginia American Water. – August 21, Bluefield Daily Telegraph

Xcel Energy Colorado (Denver, Colorado) – The utility will pass tax cut savings along to customers:

Xcel Energy will pass on $20 million in federal tax savings to its natural gas customers in Colorado, with more savings on the way for electric customers.

Federal tax obligations go into the calculation that Xcel Energy and other utilities use to determine their cost of service. The Tax Cut and Jobs Act, which Congress passed in December, cut the federal corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent at the start of the year. – March 1, 2018, Denver Post article excerpt

Xcel Energy North Dakota (North Dakota) - The utility will pass tax cut savings along to customers:

Xcel Energy will soon distribute nearly $10 million to all North Dakota electricity customers as a result of the federal tax cut. All Xcel Energy electricity customers in the state will receive a credit on their bills. The refund for a residential electricity customer will average about $46, but will vary based on each customer’s actual use.

The North Dakota Public Service Commission approved the refunds this week and customers should receive them as one-time bill credit beginning this spring. – February 8, 2019, Inforum article excerpt

Xcel Energy Minnesota (Minnesota) - The utility will pass tax cut savings along to customers:

About six months ago, Xcel Energy announced its Minnesota customers would receive a rebate because of a federal tax cut. In Minnesota, $200 million was returned to customers through a one-time credit on their bills. A typical Minnesota electricity customer who pays $85 to $90 a month received a credit of about $45. – February 8, 2019, Inforum article excerpt

For further examples of the benefits of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, see https://www.atr.org/list

More from Americans for Tax Reform


Norquist Letter to Schumer on Indexing Capital Gains

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Posted by John Kartch on Wednesday, July 17th, 2019, 5:00 AM PERMALINK

ATR President Grover Norquist today released a letter to Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) urging him to encourage President Trump to index capital gains taxes to inflation. Schumer has long supported ending the inflation tax, as evidenced by his remarks on the House floor in 1992. 

Read the letter here or below: 

Dear Senator Schumer:

I saw the July 12 letter signed by 15 Democrat senators attacking your long-held support for ending the inflation tax on capital gains.

Your strong statement on Feb. 27, 1992 on the floor of the U.S. House was a powerful endorsement of the need to index capital gains to create jobs.

The fifteen Democrat senators need to listen to you when you stated:

“If we really want to increase growth, there are proposals that we can do. I would be for indexing all capital gains and savings and borrowing.”

How right you were. And are.

The White House shares your view that we must index capital gains to end the taxation of inflation. They are moving to enact this through their executive power as recognized and recently affirmed by the Supreme Court.

The Treasury Secretary has the authority to right this wrong simply by defining “cost” as the real cost, which is “cost plus inflation” rather than “historic cost.” The ability was confirmed by the 2002 Supreme Court decision Verizon Communications Inc. v. FCC.

The court made it clear that “cost” is a not an unambiguous term. There is historic cost, cost plus inflation, replacement cost, and others. And the present Supreme Court just clarified that agencies maintain that authority. The authority of Treasury to choose an appropriate definition of “cost” was made crystal clear in Kisor v. Wilkie on June 26, 2019.

You are correct that ending the taxation of inflation is both just and pro-growth. 

The court is correct that the authority to right this wrong is in the hands of the Treasury Department.                

I write to encourage you to urge President Trump to act as soon as possible to make this change and supercharge the U.S. economy.

That will fix the problem of taxing inflation quicker than you trying to talk sense to the 15 senators who disagree with you.

Sincerely,
Grover Norquist
President, Americans for Tax Reform 

See also:

Schumer Video: "I Would Be For Indexing All Capital Gains"

Democrats Supported Indexing Capital Gains Taxes to Inflation in 1992

 

Photo Credit: Gage Skidmore


Biden's Tax Hypocrisy

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Posted by John Kartch on Thursday, July 11th, 2019, 2:00 PM PERMALINK

(Op-ed by Ryan Ellis -- IRS Enrolled Agent and President of the Center for a Free Economy -- as published in The Washington Examiner)

Democratic presidential candidate and former Vice President Joe Biden this week released several years of income tax returns, probably hoping the story would be that he did so and President Trump has not.

However, Richard Rubin from the Wall Street Journal found a much more interesting nugget: in 2017 and 2018, Joe Biden and his wife ran $13 million of profits through two subchapter-S corporations. In so doing, they avoided $500,000 in Social Security and Medicare taxes they would have paid if they instead reported the income as sole proprietors directly on their 1040 income tax returns.

That’s because profits from an “S-corp” are subject to federal income tax, but not to the Social Security and Medicare tax. This is not true for sole proprietors, who are liable for both layers of tax in full.

Biden, incidentally, is campaigning in favor of an across-the-board tax increase.

If this all sounds familiar to veteran politicos, it’s the same tax problem that helped bring down Democrat presidential candidate John Edwards in 2004.

To be clear, the use of S-corps is a perfectly legal tax avoidance strategy deployed commonly in family businesses across the country. It is not tax evasion, but it most certainly is a tax strategy — and if one takes Biden’s history on the matter seriously, it's a tax strategy he thinks is a loophole.

To be equally clear, Joe Biden is a hypocrite for using S-corporations in this way for at least four reasons. This is, after all, a man who said that paying more in taxes was a “patriotic act." [Click here to continue reading]

Photo Credit: Marc Nozell


Carbon Tax Requires Bureaucracy to Distribute 295 Million Monthly “Dividend” Payments

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Posted by John Kartch on Wednesday, June 12th, 2019, 3:00 PM PERMALINK

--That adds up to 3.5 billion payments in a year, more than twice the current total number of payments made by the entire federal government--

--What the carbon tax groups won’t tell you--

A carbon tax and “dividend” (hat tip to the beltway consultant who coined this suspect term) scheme would impose a large tax increase on the American people. It would also create a large new entitlement spending program and give the government more power over your life. It’s no wonder more than 75 conservative groups this week sent a statement to congress: “We oppose any carbon tax.”

Now, assume for a moment that the carbon tax pushers are telling the truth, and that the carbon tax money wouldn’t disappear into a black hole of “urgent” Democrat special spending interests (Green New Deal, etc.)

Because a carbon tax will make most everything in life more expensive, carbon tax advocates breezily mention that someone in Washington DC will send “dividend checks” or “rebates” in order to compensate Americans for the increased burden on their livelihood.

Energy and environment reporters dutifully note each new corporate honcho or Nobel economist who endorses a carbon-tax-and-dividend framework. Yet these same reporters have shown a remarkable lack of curiosity as to the real life ramifications of such a complex redistribution regime. They simply tell their readers that “dividends” or “rebates” will be sent out to the countryside, and then…well that’s it. They do not report the story any further. The carbon tax groups certainly do not mind.

The House carbon tax bill (H.R. 763) -- co-sponsored by 42 Democrats and one Republican, Francis Rooney -- calls for such payments to be made “each month” to “any natural living person who has a valid Social Security number or taxpayer identification number and is a citizen or lawful resident of the United States.”

How many payments is that each month?

Consider:

The estimated population of U.S. citizens is 294,959,400

Therefore the carbon tax bill would require some federal entity to distribute at least 294,959,400 payments each month.

Multiply that number by 12 (months) and you get 3,539,512,800.

3.5 billion individual carbon tax payments in a year.

That’s a lot of payments. For perspective, let’s compare it to the Social Security Administration:

-The Social Security Administration has 68,535,000 total beneficiaries (May 2019).

-294,959,400 (estimated population of U.S. citizens) divided by 68,535,000 (quantity of SSA beneficiaries) equals 4.3

This means the carbon tax bill involves over four times the quantity of beneficiaries as the Social Security Administration.

How big of a bureaucracy is the Social Security Administration?

Headquartered in Baltimore, the SSA has almost 60,000 total employees. According to SSA: “The field organization, which is decentralized to provide services at the local level, includes 10 regional offices, 6 processing centers, and approximately 1,230 field offices. There are 2 additional processing centers in the central office.” Here is the organization chart.

This is not to say that the carbon tax-and-dividend scheme would require the same proportion of employees as the SSA.

But the carbon tax scheme will task some agency or agencies with a significant bureaucratic undertaking: Enrollment, eligibility determination, fraud prevention, case workers -- to resolve lost, missing, or inaccurate payments, custody and divorce issues (kids get the payments too) and bank account number updates -- software development, IT staffing, human resources management, legal staffing, and dozens of other logistical undertakings. Congressional offices will spend some quantity of time on carbon tax problem calls, letters, and related casework.

(Oh, and the “dividend” payments are subject to federal and state income tax and must be reconciled on your annual tax return. This will require coordination across the federal government and trigger an enormous quantity of paperwork for the government, employers, and households.)

The entire federal government makes about 1.38 billion payments per year.

This means the carbon tax bill will require at least twice the quantity of total current annual U.S. government payments.

Ready to get started?

See also:

Romney "looking at" carbon tax

Francis Rooney Endorses Large Tax Increase

 

Photo Credit: Eric Smyth/Flickr


Romney “looking at” carbon tax bill

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Posted by John Kartch on Wednesday, June 5th, 2019, 5:57 PM PERMALINK

Senator Mitt Romney is “looking at” a carbon tax bill, according to a report from E&E News published this afternoon. Democrat Senator Chris Coons of Delaware is trying to convince Romney to impose the tax, which would impose a significant tax increase on the American people.

Details of the bill Coons is trying to sell to Romney:

The bill imposes a massive and continually ratcheting national energy tax, allowing politicians to raise taxes without ever having to vote.

How big is the tax increase? Likely north of $1 trillion over a decade. There isn't an official score on the bill yet, but a recent CBO report estimated the revenue a generic $25 per ton (increasing 2% per year) carbon tax bill would raise: $1.1 trillion over ten years. The Coons bill starts at $15 per ton and increases by a much steeper $10 per ton per year (and in some cases by $15 per ton per year). By any reasonable estimate, the Coons carbon tax will impose an extremely large tax increase on the American people.

The bill gives czar-like powers to EPA and IRS chiefs. The bill directs the IRS and EPA to work closely together on enforcement. The EPA chief is given the power to impose "monitoring, reporting, and record-keeping requirements" on Americans. The bill also gives the EPA chief power to conduct "investigations" and force "information collection."

The bill shovels taxpayer money into a slush fund for IRS, EPA, and State Department bureaucrats. The IRS and EPA will have direct access to taxpayer money for what the bill calls "Administrative Expenses" and "Other Administrative Expenses." For reasons unclear, State Department bureaucrats will also have access to the taxpayer funds. What could go wrong?

The bill imposes income tax on the carbon tax "dividend." Yes, the government fleeces the taxpayers and sends the carbon tax money to DC, where it is siphoned off by various agencies. Then a leftover "dividend" is supposedly sent out, which is then subject to income tax.

Got it? The "dividend" will need to be reconciled on your federal and state tax return. You'll have the joy of chasing down another tax form before April 15 each year. Here is the bill language:

 “FEE TREATMENT OF PAYMENTS. -- Amounts paid under this subsection shall be includible in gross income."

The bill attempts backdoor family planning by considering a child -- and anyone under the age of 19 -- to be one-half of a person. Because the carbon tax will raise the cost of everything, household budgets will get squeezed. Since energy is built into the price of everything, the government will end up with increased control over your livelihood. And the carbon tax bill considers children and all Americans under the age of 19 to be one-half of one person. Why? Backdoor family planning? Here it is, straight from the bill text:

"A carbon dividend payment is one pro-rata share for each adult and half a pro-rata share for each child under 19 years old of amounts available for the month in the Carbon Dividend Trust Fund."

The bill greases the skids for a Value-Added Tax, a cash cow for even bigger government.

The bill authorizes carbon tax enforcement agents. The bill authorizes carbon tax enforcement agents to collect the new tax on energy used by Americans. As if customs enforcement doesn't already have enough on its plate, the bill states:

“The revenues collected under this chapter may be used to supplement appropriations made available in fiscal years 2020 and thereafter -

 “(1) to U.S. Customs and Border Protection, in such amounts as are necessary to administer the carbon border fee adjustment.”

The bill authorizes certain government sharing of Social Security "individual identity information." More bureaucrats will have access to your information. The bill states:

“The Commissioner of Social Security shall, on written request, disclose to officers and employees of the Department of the Treasury individual identity information which has been disclosed to the Social Security Administration as is necessary to administer section 9512"

Americans for Tax Reform opposes the bill. "The proposed carbon tax is a gas tax and a tax on your electric bill. Worse, it increases automatically year after year so the politicians can raise your taxes without ever having to vote," said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform. "The tax will be hidden in the price of all goods and services. A hidden tax. A permanent tax. An uncontrolled tax that increases without end."

Photo Credit: davelawrence8/Flickr


Buttigieg Wants Carbon Tax

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Posted by John Kartch on Friday, May 17th, 2019, 2:08 PM PERMALINK

Democrat 2020 presidential candidate Pete Buttigieg wants to impose a carbon tax on the American people, his campaign announced Thursday.

The Issues tab of the Buttigieg campaign site states:

Implement a Green New Deal with all available tools including a carbon tax-and-dividend for Americans, and major direct investment to build a 100% clean energy society.

A carbon tax would make life more expensive for all Americans, and would hit working households especially hard.

In Canada for example, the carbon tax has proven so expensive that a school district had to cut bus service for 400 children. The school district is struggling to pay a $3.3 million carbon tax bill.

As reported by the Calgary Herald:

A public school trustee is asking if the province would consider exempting school boards from the carbon tax after administrators revealed this week that the Calgary Board of Education paid about $3.3 million last year for the levy and has been forced to take buses off the roads.

A recent audit detailed the burden of the carbon tax on school fuel costs, school heating costs, and school electrical costs:

Breton, in response to questions from Davis about the CBE’s audited financial statements from 2017-18, estimated the CBE pays about $300,000 in a given school year for the carbon tax on transportation fuel, including school buses, about $1.4 million a year for natural gas to heat CBE buildings and a rough estimate of about $1.5 million for electricity, totaling up to about $3.3 million a year.

400 students were kicked off buses, creating a difficult situation for families. As noted by the Herald:

As a result, fewer buses have meant fewer stops, longer commutes and more difficult schedules for families. Many students have also been transferred to public transit.

Busing has been such a challenge for families, adjusting to schedules. It’s a bit challenging that we’re in a situation where we’ve had to remove almost 400 students from buses in order to pay for the carbon tax in addition to the other impacts on the organization.

The Buttigieg call for a carbon tax is in lockstep with the official Democrat party platform, which endorses a carbon tax. The Republican platform is opposed to any carbon tax.

“Mayor Pete” is shaping up to be a big fan of tax increases. He recently endorsed a steep tax increase on homes and businesses while kowtowing to union bosses in Los Angeles.

Already overtaxed local residents shot back: “It will make my increased property taxes very difficult for me to pay. I’m struggling. Just because I own a home it doesn’t mean I have deep pockets, it’s the exact opposite and this could break me,” said resident Maria Fischer, on Twitter.

Voters have consistently rejected carbon taxes, even in blue states. Carbon tax-imposing politicians are routinely defeated at the ballot box, as shown by this Americans for Tax Reform timeline.

See Also:

“Mayor Pete” Calls for Steep Tax Hike on Homes and Businesses

Biden: “First thing I’d do is repeal those Trump tax cuts.”

Joe Biden broke his middle class tax pledge

Kamala Harris Vows Repeal of Tax Cuts “on Day One”

Biden: “When I’m President, if God willing I am, we’re going to reverse those Trump tax cuts.”

Photo Credit: Andrew Brau/Flickr


California Examples of Tax Reform Good News

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Posted by John Kartch on Thursday, April 25th, 2019, 10:00 AM PERMALINK

Thanks to the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act enacted by congressional Republicans and President Trump, 90 percent of American wage earners have higher take-home pay. And employers of all sizes are hiring, raising pay, increasing benefits, upgrading equipment and expanding operations.

Below are several examples of tax reform good news in California. (Additions to this list can be sent to jkartch@atr.org)

Mission Produce (Oxnard, California) -- $1,000 bonuses; investment in new facilities and technology:

Mission Produce, an avocado distributor based in Oxnard, is rewarding employees in response to the recent federal tax cut.

“We are giving all our U.S.-based employees a $1,000 bonus,” President and CEO Steve Barnard said at a recent company meeting. “We applaud President Trump for spearheading the action needed to pass tax reform. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 created a meaningful impact on Mission’s business. We plan to invest the tax savings in new facilities and technology to create opportunities for the company and for our employees. It’s only fair that we share the benefits that tax reform will have on our business with our valued employees.” — Feb. 22 2018, Reno Gazette Journal excerpt

Visa (Foster City, California) – significantly increased permanent contributions to employee 401(k) accounts:

The recent passage of tax reform legislation here in the U.S. will generate substantial benefit to businesses with U.S.-based headquarters, including Visa, through a reduction in the overall corporate tax rate. This action will allow us to increase investment in our long-term growth, and most importantly in all of you who are so integral to Visa’s success.

We are in the very early stages of determining the extent and timing of the investments that we might make. As we explore the range of potential options, taking actions in support of our employees around the world is high on our list.

As an initial step, and recognizing that the change in tax is focused on the U.S., we have looked first at improving our benefits for U.S.-based employees by significantly enriching our company contributions to the 401(k) program:

Today Visa matches 200% of eligible employee contributions up to 3% of base salary for a total maximum contribution of 6% of eligible pay.

Visa will now increase the match to 200% of employee contributions, up to 5% of base salary, for a Visa total maximum contribution of 10% of eligible pay. 

This enhanced benefit will be available to all U.S. employees, with the exception of Executive Committee members, and will take effect in late February. To encourage use of the program, we will be changing the default employee pre-tax contribution from 3% to 5% for employees who currently contribute less than 5%.

We are also exploring a range of talent, education and technology investments designed to provide sustained enhanced benefits to all employees around the world, consistent with the role everyone will play in building our business for years to come. We look forward to sharing more specifics with you in the coming months. – Excerpt from Jan. 3 internal announcement to Visa’s U.S. employees

Apple (Headquarters in Cupertino plus Apple Store locations in Bakersfield, Berkeley, Brea, Berlingame, Canoga Park, Carlsbad, Cerritos, Chula Vista, Corte Madera, Costa Mesa, Cupertino, Emeryville, Escondido, Fresno, Glendale, Irvine, Los Angeles, Los Gatos, Manhattan Beach, Mission Viejo, Modesto, Monterey, Newport Beach, Northridge, Palm Desert, Palo Alto, Pasadena, Pleasanton, Rancho Cucamonga, Roseville, Sacramento, San Diego, San Francisco, San Jose, San Luis Obispo, San Mateo, Santa Barbara, Santa Clara, Santa Monica, Santa Rosa, Sherman Oaks, Temecula, Thousand Oaks, Valencia, and Walnut Creek)

$2,500 employee bonuses in the form of restricted stock units; $30 billion in additional capital expenditures over five years; 20,000 new employees will be hired; increased support of coding education and science, technology, engineering, arts, and math; increased support for U.S. manufacturing:

     Bonuses:

Apple Inc. told employees Wednesday that it’s issuing a bonus of $2,500 worth of restricted stock units, following the introduction of the new U.S. tax law, according to people familiar with the matter.

The iPhone maker will begin issuing stock grants to most employees worldwide in the coming months, said the people, who asked not to be identified because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly. The move comes on the same day Apple said it would bring back most of its cash from overseas and spend $30 billion in the U.S. over the next five years, funding an additional technical support campus, data centers and 20,000 new employees.

Apple confirmed the bonuses in response to a Bloomberg inquiry Wednesday. – Jan. 17 2018, Bloomberg News article excerpt

     Capital expenditures, etc:

Apple expects to invest over $30 billion in capital expenditures in the US over the next five years and create over 20,000 new jobs through hiring at existing campuses and opening a new one.

Building on the initial success of the Advanced Manufacturing Fund announced last spring, Apple is increasing the size of the fund from $1 billion to $5 billion. The fund was established to support innovation among American manufacturers and help others establish a presence in the US. It is already backing projects with leading manufacturers in Kentucky and rural Texas.

Apple works with over 9,000 American suppliers — large and small businesses in all 50 states — and each of Apple’s core products relies on parts or materials made in the US or provided by US-based suppliers.

Apple, which has a 40-year history in education, also plans to accelerate its efforts across the US in support of coding education as well as programs focused on Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Math (STEAM). – Jan. 17, 2018 Apple press release excerpts

MEC Arial Work Platforms (Kerman, California) – $1,000 bonuses:

Company owner David White says the tax cut legislation deserves some of the credit for a boost in sales and hiring.
"Its more of an indirect effect, and as the economy has improved, and as there are more new construction starts, and our products are used in that new construction, they are used in industrial construction, and upgrades. So that has resulted in increased production, increased sales volume, which has directly affected us of course."

White says sales are way up and he's given each of the 130 employees a $1,000 bonus. May 2, 2018, ABC 30 Actions News.com article excerpt

ecUtopia (San Diego, California) – Tax reform bonuses to employees:

ecUtopia, the largest provider of EDI services within the Home Furnishings Industry, announced today bonuses for all its employees. The employee bonus is attributed to the new tax law. Under the new tax bill, corporate tax rate will drop from 35% to 21%.

Phil Kenney, CEO & President of ecUtopia, explains “we had great news from our accountants and wanted to pass that to our employees.” – May 3 2018, Furniture Today article excerpt

Simulations Plus, Inc (Lancaster, California) – $1,000 bonuses:

The premier provider of simulation and modeling software and consulting services for all stages of pharmaceutical discovery and development, today announced that it will be distributing a one-time $1,000 discretionary cash bonus to each of its employees.

Walt Woltosz, chairman and chief executive officer of Simulations Plus, said, “As we announced on April 9, 2018, when we reported record financial results for our second fiscal quarter of 2018, with the effects of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017, we posted a deferred tax benefit of approximately $1.5 million in our second fiscal quarter, as well as lower income tax rates for January and February. – April 24, 2018 Simulations Plus, Inc press release excerpt

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (San Francisco, California) - the utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers:

PG&E is taking action to pass along approximately $450 million in annual tax savings to its customers. As a first step, today PG&E made three separate filings requesting to pass along approximately $325 million per year in federal tax savings from the  federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act for 2018 and 2019. PG&E has proposed to the CPUC that the benefits of the federal tax savings be used to offset expected rate increases. - March 30, 2018, PG&E Press Release

California Water Service (San Jose, California) – The utility will pass along tax cut savings to customers

California Water Service (Cal Water) submitted a filing with the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) yesterday to decrease revenue needed in its service areas by almost $18 million, due to changes in federal tax laws and CPUC-authorized capital equity and debt financing costs. If approved as submitted, new rates reflecting the lower tax rates and financing costs will be effective July 1, 2018. – May 30, 2018 GlobeNewsWire article excerpt

PodcastOne (Los Angeles, California) – $1,000 bonuses for all full-time employees:

PodcastOne Founder and Executive Chairman Norman Pattiz announced today that the podcast company will award all full-time employees a $1,000 cash bonus.

 Pattiz said, “There’s no question that cutting the corporate Federal Tax Rate to 21% will have a positive effect on business, ours included. We want our employees  to feel the direct benefit of these cuts, especially since because of their efforts we are coming off another record year in 2017. So we say, ‘Thank you to our dedicated staff and job well done.’”

PodcastOne is the nation’s largest advertiser-supported podcast network. – Jan. 30 2018, PodcastOne press release

Kramerica Properties (Merced, California) – This small family-owned company gave each of the six employees a $2,000 tax reform bonus:

My employer Kramerica Properties, a small family owned company gave each employee $2,000 once this tax bill was signed by our President. In fact, on election day, the owners gave us the day off and once Trump won the election, we got the whole weekend off and paid for. Only having 6 people employed, it is much easier and fun to celebrate these "small crumbs". 

I would also like to add that instead of the office listening to music station, we only listen to KMJNOW conservative radio, & the best part is all employees are Hispanic & love calling to the radio station. Hispanics for Trump. – M. Alcaraz, Kramerica Properties

JimRinehart.com State Farm agent (Seaside, California) – Pay raises for employees:

I am a self-employed Insurance Agent for State Farm Insurance with 3 full time employees in my office in Seaside, CA.  Because of President’s  tax reform I gave all of my staff a pay raise starting Jan 1 2018. – Jim Rinehart, State Farm Agent

Amgen (Thousand Oaks, California) – Construction of a new $300 million U.S. manufacturing plant which will employ up to 300 at the facility; $300 million investment in biotechnology ventures; $3.5 billion in capital expenditures; $100 million investment in Amgen Scholars and Amgen Biotech Experience programs; $100 million in charitable donations, and more:

  • Amgen will build a new “Next Generation” manufacturing plant in the U.S. (location TBD by Q2) – a $300 Million investment to implement Amgen’s next-generation biomanufacturing capabilities, and manufacture products for the U.S. and export markets. The construction and validation work is expected to add 220 jobs to the local economy.  In addition, Amgen expects this new facility to employ up to 300 highly skilled full-time employees.
  • We will make product in the U.S. and export it to cover 85% of our international sales. 
  • An investment up to $300 Million of growth capital for early-stage, innovative biotechnology companies in the U.S. through the Amgen Ventures fund.
  • We expect to invest ~$3.5 Billion in capital expenditures in the U.S. over the next 5 years.   
  • We’ll also grow our already substantial commitment to our communities with plans for the Amgen Foundation’s investments in the proven Amgen Scholars and Amgen Biotech Experience programs which we expect to reach $100 Million of commitment within 4 years.  We have engaged some 600,000 college and high school students in person through these programs and consider this our commitment to helping to build a pipeline of talented scientists and biologists in the U.S. and beyond. 
  • Through our Foundation’s philanthropic giving we expect to deploy $100 Million over the next 5 years in the communities where we work and live. 
  • We estimate that lower personal tax rates combined with investments we are making in enhancing base wages for these staff will create literally thousands of dollars of improvement in the average take-home pay for our typical U.S. non-executive staff member. 
  • Tax Reform provides us with more flexibility for capital deployment.  Since 2011, we have invested more than $42 Billion in research and development, innovation-based acquisitions, and long-term oriented capital expenditures.  We expect to continue making such long-term investments now while also being able to return excess capital to our shareholders in the form of growing dividends and share buybacks. 
  • Based on our confidence in the long-term outlook for the business, which was enhanced by the benefits of tax reform, we have increased our share repurchase authorization by $10 Billion. -- Amgen CEO Bob Bradway, Amgen 4th quarter 2017 earnings call
     

The Charles Schwab Corporation (San Francisco, California) – $1,000 bonus for about 9,000 non-executive employees:

President and CEO, Walt Bettinger commented, “In 2017, anticipating the tax law change and in response to the company’s strong financial performance and our employees’ unwavering commitment to clients, Schwab provided a special $1,000 bonus for about 9,000 non-executive employees. Based on the favorable environment, we also continued hiring staff across the firm’s geographic locations, adding over 1,200 net new employees, and we allocated part of our 11% overall spending increase to support client service efforts and continue to build out new business centers in Austin and Dallas that will allow us to house over 4,000 new employees in the next two years. Additionally, we expanded parental leave benefits for all Schwab employees and increased the annual corporate contribution to philanthropy to benefit our local communities.” – Jan. 25 2018, The Charles Schwab Corporation press release

Bank of the West (San Francisco, California) – Base wage increase to $15 per hour:

Bank of the West announced it will increase the company's minimum wage across the business to $15 per hour. The change will impact one-quarter of hourly team members, primarily in the Bank's branches and call centers.

The permanent increase will take effect on April 1 and is part of our long-standing commitment to reward our team members and attract the industry's best talent. At more than double the federal minimum wage, the Bank's new minimum wage is the result of a thorough internal review of the Bank's business stemming from the federal tax reform recently completed by the U.S. Congress. – Feb. 8 2018, Bank of the West press release

T.J. Maxx – 118 stores in California – tax reform bonuses, retirement plan contributions, parental leave, enhanced vacation benefits, and charitable donations:

The 2017 Tax Act benefited the Company in the fourth quarter and full year Fiscal 2018. The Company expects to continue to benefit from the 2017 Tax Act going forward, primarily due to the lower U.S. corporate income tax rate. As a result of the estimated cash benefit related to the 2017 Tax Act, the Company is taking the following actions:

Associates

  • A one-time, discretionary bonus to eligible, non-bonus-plan Associates, globally
  • An incremental contribution to the Company’s defined contribution retirement plans for eligible Associates in the U.S. and internationally
  • Instituting paid parental leave for eligible Associates in the U.S.
  • Enhancing vacation benefits for certain U.S. Associates

Communities

Made meaningful contributions to TJX’s charitable foundations around the world to further support TJX’s charitable giving. – Feb. 28, 2018 The TJX Companies Inc. press release excerpt

Saban Capital Group Inc. (Los Angeles, California): $1,000 bonuses:

Media mogul Haim Saban on Friday became the latest to dole out $1,000 bonuses to employees in celebration of tax reform.

According to a letter to staffers at Saban Capital Group, which invests in entertainment and communications companies, Haim and his wife, Cheryl, were inspired by Disney's decision to award bonuses to its employees.

Before Disney, several companies including Comcast and Starbucks said they'd be handing out bonus checks (and Apple gave out stock bonuses) because of tax reform championed by President Donald Trump that reduces the rate paid by corporations to a maximum of 21 percent, down from 35 percent previously.

AT&T, which is trying to purchase Time Warner, was one of the first companies to announce $1,000 bonuses for 200,000 U.S. employees.

Unlike some other companies, though, the Sabans stipulate that the bonuses will amount to $1,000 after taxes. – Feb. 2 2018, The Hollywood Reporter news article excerpt

International Offset Corporation (Los Angeles, California) -- $1,000 bonuses to all employees and 1099 subcontracting partners. 

First Northern Community Bancorp (Dixon, California) -- Base pay raised by $2 per hours; $1,000 bonuses for all non-executive employees; increased charitable donations. 

Jordan Winery (Healdsburg, California) -- $1,000 bonuses for each of its 85 employees:

In response to the tax cut bill that passed this week, John Jordan, owner of Jordan Winery in Sonoma County, California, announces that he will give all eligible winery employees a $1,000 bonus as a result of the passage of the 2017 tax reform bill.Dec. 22, 2017 Jordan Winery press release

Summit State Bank (Santa Rosa, California) -- $2,000 bonuses for non-executive employees.

Wells Fargo (San Francisco, California) – Raised base wage from $13.50 to $15.00 per hour; $400 million in charitable donations for 2018; $100 million increased capital investment over next three years:

“Our announcement was directly related to the passage of tax reform.” -- Arati Sontakay Randolph, Wells Fargo senior vice president

Willis Lease Finance Corporation (Novato, California) -- $1,000 bonuses for all non-executive employees:

Willis Lease Finance Corporation (NASDAQ:WLFC) today announced that it has given all non-executive employees a one-time bonus of $1,000 as a result of the tax laws recently passed by the United States Congress and signed into law by President Donald Trump.

"We believe the new tax laws will help stimulate growth in our industry and our business specifically," said Charles F. Willis, Chairman and CEO. "We have therefore decided to return some of that benefit to our employees who work incredibly hard and are an important part of the American and global economy." – Jan. 19 2018, Willis Lease Finance Corporation press release

Walt Disney Company (Burbank, California) -- $1,000 bonuses for 125,000 employees; $50 million investment in employee educational programs:

Disney announced Tuesday it will pay over 125,000 employees a one-time cash bonus of $1,000, as well as make a new $50 million investment into education program for employees.

"We are directing approximately $125 million to our cast members and employees across the country and making higher education more accessible with the launch of this new program," CEO Bob Iger said in a statement.

Disney says both initiatives are due to recent tax reform. Some of the biggest companies in the United States have been giving out bonuses to employees, often citing the recently-passed tax bill as the motive. Boeing, AT&T, Wells Fargo, Comcast, Bank of America, and Walmart are just a few of those distributing new tax benefits to workers.

The bonus applies any full-time and part-time employees who have been working for Disney since before January 1. Those eligible will receive the bonus in two parts, with one in March and the other in September. Executive level employees are exempt.

Disney's education initiative will be available to nearly 88,000 hourly employees in the U.S.  -- Jan. 23 2018, CNBC article excerpt

AT&T -- $1,000 bonuses to 32,247 California employees; Nationwide, $1 billion increase in capital expenditures:

Today, Congress approved legislation representing the first comprehensive tax reform in a generation. The President is expected to sign the bill in the coming days.

Once tax reform is signed into law, AT&T* plans to invest an additional $1 billion in the United States in 2018 and pay a special $1,000 bonus to more than 200,000 AT&T U.S. employees — all union-represented, non-management and front-line managers. If the President signs the bill before Christmas, employees will receive the bonus over the holidays.

“Congress, working closely with the President, took a monumental step to bring taxes paid by U.S. businesses in line with the rest of the industrialized world,” said Randall Stephenson, AT&T chairman and CEO. “This tax reform will drive economic growth and create good-paying jobs. In fact, we will increase our U.S. investment and pay a special bonus to our U.S. employees.”

Since 2012, AT&T has invested more in the United States than any other public company. Every $1 billion in capital invested in the telecom industry creates about 7,000 jobs for American workers, research shows. -- Dec. 20, 2017 AT&T Inc. press release

Community Valley Bank (El Centro, California) – $500 bonus for all employees; increased charitable donations:

In consideration of the expected benefit from the corporate tax reduction, the bank awarded each employee a $500 bonus. The bank has also enhanced employee education and training opportunities for 2018 and expanded its community contribution budget toward local non-profit services. — Jan. 29 2018, Community Valley Bank press release

Lowe's (In California -- 17,000 employees at 111 stores and four distribution facilities) --  Employees will receive bonuses of up to $1,000 based on length of service; expanded benefits and maternity.parental leave; $5,000 of adoption assistance.

Home Depot (232 locations in California) -- bonuses for all hourly employees, up to $1,000.

Walmart (304 retail locations in California) -- Pay raises, bonuses of up to $1,000, expanded maternity and parental leave, and $5,000 for adoption expenses:

Today, more than 890,000 Walmart U.S. associates, including more than 136,000 in California, are receiving a share of more than $560 million total cash bonuses, including:

  • More than $160 million in cash bonuses based on their stores’ Q4 performance, and
  • More than $400 million in one-time cash bonuses tied to recent changes in tax law.
  • In California, Walmart associates are receiving approximately $34 million in combined bonuses.
     

The bonuses, along with an annual pay raise for our hourly field associates, are included in their March 8 paycheck. Between Q4 performance bonuses, tenure-based bonuses, pay increases and recent paid time off (PTO) cash outs, more than $1 billion flowed to U.S. hourly associates during the months of February and March.

In January, Walmart announced plans to increase the starting wage for all hourly associates in the U.S. to at least $11, expand maternity and parental leave benefits, and provide a one-time cash bonus for eligible associates of up to $1,000. A new adoption assistance benefit of $5,000 per child – announced in conjunction with the other changes – went into effect on February 1. -- March 8, 2018 Walmart press release

Chipotle Mexican Grill (408 locations in California) – Bonuses ranging from $250 to $1,000; increased employee benefits; nationally, $50 million investment in existing restaurants.

Ryder (35 locations in California) -- Tax reform bonuses for employees.

Starbucks Coffee Company (Over 2,000 locations in California) – $500 stock grants for all retail employees, $2,000 stock grants for store managers, and varying plan and support center employee stock grants. Nationally, 8,000 new retail jobs; an additional wage increase this year, totaling approximately $120 million in wage increases, increased sick time benefits and parental leave.

STERIS Corp. (California locations in Costa Mesa, Hayward, Ontario, Petaluma, Point Richmond, San Diego, Santa Clara, Temecula, and Tustin) -- $1,000 bonuses for non-executive U.S. -based employees:

"Like many companies, the recent tax reform in the U.S. will result in significant additional earnings for STERIS to strategically grow our business and return value to Customers, employees and shareholders.  One of our first actions on that front will be a one-time special discretionary bonus of $1,000 to all U.S. employees other than senior executives." -- Feb. 7, 2018 STERIS plc press release

FedEx (Multiple locations in California) – Accelerated and increased compensation; pension plan contributions:

“FedEx Corporation is announcing three major programs today following the recently enacted U.S. Tax Cuts and Jobs Act:

  • Over $200 million in increased compensation, about two-thirds of which will go to hourly team members by advancing 2018 annual pay increases by six months to April 1st from the normal October date. The remainder will fund increases in performance- based incentive plans for salaried personnel.
  • A voluntary contribution of $1.5 billion to the FedEx pension plan to ensure it remains one of the best funded retirement programs in the country.
  • Investing $1.5 billion to significantly expand the FedEx Express Indianapolis hub over the next seven years. The Memphis SuperHub will also be modernized and enlarged in a major program the details of which will be announced later this spring.

FedEx believes the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will likely increase GDP and investment in the United States. – Jan. 26 2018, FedEx press release

Bank of America (Over 800 California locations) -- $1,000 bonuses for non-executive employees.

Cintas Corporation (Multiple locations in California) -- $1,000 bonuses for employees of at least a year, $500 for employees of less than a year.

Comcast (Multiple locations in California) -- $1,000 bonuses; nationally, at least $50 billion investment in infrastructure in next five years.

Note: If you know of other California examples, please email John Kartch at jkartch@atr.org

The running nationwide list of companies can be found at www.atr.org/list

 


Joe Biden Broke His Middle Class Tax Pledge


Posted by John Kartch on Thursday, April 25th, 2019, 7:00 AM PERMALINK

As Vice President, Joe Biden broke his promise to the middle class that no one making less than $250,000 would see a single penny of their tax raised. Biden said his tax vow applied to "any tax."

Biden made the promise during a nationally televised Vice Presidential debate on Oct. 3, 2008 using firm language:

“No one making less than $250,000 under Barack Obama’s plan will see one single penny of their tax raised whether it’s their capital gains tax, their income tax, investment tax, any tax.” [Video]

Once elected, Biden immediately pushed for tax increases on millions of middle class households. When Obamacare was signed into law with Biden's support, it imposed a series of middle class tax hikes including the individual mandate tax, new taxes on households with health savings accounts and flexible spending accounts, and an income tax hike on Americans facing high medical bills:

Individual Mandate Tax: Obamacare imposed a tax penalty of $695 for an individual and $2,085 for a family of four for failing to buy “qualifying” health insurance as defined by Obama-Biden rules.

The tax hit low and middle-income families hard: 76.86% of households stuck paying the tax made less than $50,000 per year, a blatant violation of Biden's pledge to the American people. (Thanks to the GOP congress and President Trump, this tax was zeroed out as part of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.)

Medicine Cabinet Tax on health Savings Accounts and Flexible Spending Accounts: Because of Obamacare, the 20 million Americans with a Health Savings Account and the 30 to 35 million Americans with a Flexible Spending Account are no longer able to purchase over-the-counter medicines using these pre-tax account funds. Examples include cold, cough, and flu medicine, menstrual cramp relief medication, allergy medicines, and dozens of other common medicine cabinet health items.

Chronic Care Income Tax Hike: This income tax increase directly targets middle class Americans who happen to face high medical and dental bills in a given year. This Obamacare tax hit 10 million households per year. Before Obamacare, Americans facing high medical expenses were allowed an income tax deduction to the extent that those expenses exceeded 7.5 percent of adjusted gross income (AGI). Obamacare imposed a threshold of 10 percent of AGI. Therefore, Biden not only made it more difficult to claim this deduction, he widened the net of taxable income.

Again, low and middle income households were hit hard by this tax. On average, affected taxpayers earned about $53,000 annually. ATR estimates the average income tax increase for the average affected household amounted to $200 - $400 per year.

Flexible Spending Account Tax: The 30 - 35 million Americans who use a pre-tax Flexible Spending Account (FSA) at work to pay for their family’s basic medical needs face an Obamacare-imposed cap of $2,500.

Before Obamacare, the accounts were unlimited under federal law. But now, parents looking to save for medical costs or braces for the kids find themselves quickly hitting this new cap. This restricts the options for low and middle income families.

There is one group of flexible spending account households for whom this tax is particularly cruel and onerous: parents of special needs children. Families with special needs children often use FSAs to pay for special needs education. Tuition and book costs at special needs schools can run thousands of dollars per year. Under tax rules, FSA dollars can be used to pay for this type of special needs education.This Obama-Biden tax increase limits the options available to these families.

For breaking his middle class tax pledge, Joe Biden has some explaining to do.

“Joe Biden, when running for Vice President in 2008, lied to the American people when he said he and Obama would never raise any tax on any American earning less than $250,000. Now he is running for president.  Whatever he says, taxpayers now know what to expect,” said Grover Norquist, president of Americans for Tax Reform.

 


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