Wednesday, January 18, 2017

THIS JUST IN - GOOD NEWS FROM NEW JERSEY!

Miracles can happen!
 
I found the following good news on the New Jersey Division of Taxation website - almost as if it were a response to the comment I made in this morning's earlier post about the NJ-NATP Famous State Tax Seminar (highlights are mine) -
 
NJ will continue to accept paper corporate business tax returns for the current filing year; however, all corporate payments are required to be submitted electronically.

We are in the process of developing a free filing option for corporate business tax returns so corporations can meet the efile requirement without additional cost. When free file becomes available, the mandate requiring all taxpayers and tax preparers to submit corporate business tax returns and payments electronically, will apply to all corporate taxpayers.”

My clients already gladly make all NJ state payments online - so that is not a problem. 
 
For the first time I can remember I am actually impressed by the NJ Division of Taxation!
















THE NJ-NATP FAMOUS STATE TAX SEMINAR


This past Saturday I attended the annual “Famous State Tax Seminar” offered by the NJ chapter of the National Association of Tax Professionals, as I have for all but maybe 2 (due to excessive snow) of these offerings for perhaps 25 years now.  It was held, as it has always been, at the now APA Woodbridge Hotel (the hotel formerly known as the Woodbridge Hilton) in Iselin NJ (although the location may change next year due to increased costs).

I have said for years now, this seminar is a true “must attend” for any tax preparer who prepares NJ state individual and business income tax and payroll tax returns.

As has been the custom for many years now the program began, after greetings by chapter President Tom Watkins, with the “keynote” presentation by Dennis Shilling, Deputy Executive Director of the NJ Division of Taxation, representing the Executive director who was unavailable.  While I do agree that the ED should be invited to speak each year, this presentation has not been of any real substantive value since Robert Thompson held the position – and this year was no different.

Years ago the seminar featured a presentation by the then Director of the NJ Division of Revenue, which was very informative and eye-opening.  Perhaps next year’s keynote speaker can be the current NJDFOR head.

Up next was a presentation on “Tips for Preparing the NJ Inheritance Tax Return” by attorney Michael Feinberg.  As always Michael, an excellent, well-informed and highly experienced speaker, did a great job.  But, other than his preliminary comments on recent law changes, the presentation was redundant for annual attendees.  He had given a similar talk last year and another a few years ago.  There is no need to repeat an introduction to NJ inheritance and estate taxes each year – we really only need updates.  Perhaps NJNATP can offer a separate half-day workshop on this topic during the year for members who do these returns.  I do not prepare federal or state estate or inheritance tax returns, nor do I want to, so regardless of how good this presentation was it was a waste of time for me.

Michael did suggest that, in his opinion and that of others, the current abolishment of the NJ Estate Tax in 2018 may be overturned.  The State can’t afford to do without this revenue.  He also pointed out that the 2017 $2 Million filing threshold is not really a $2 Million “exemption”.  The first $2 Million of a, for example, $3 Million estate will not be exempt from the tax.  Estates under $2 Million do not have to file a NJ Estate Tax return.  A 2017 estate worth $3 Million will very likely pay the same state estate tax as a 2016 $3 Million estate would, despite the law change.

After a brief break came the reason most of us attend this seminar each year – the “Jake and Alexis Show” (formerly the Jim and Jake Show – with Alexis DeRosa now replacing Jim Gordon, who retired a few years ago), with an able assist from NJ Tax University (a program of the NJ Division of Taxation) colleague Christina Quinones.  John Kelly, a former NJDOT employee who Schilling suggested has now “gone to the dark side” when he went from addressing the audience as a State representative to being a member of the audience as a fellow tax preparer, also added some nuggets from his years of experience to the presentation from his seat.

One comment I made to a chapter board member: the hair style of Jake - Jacob Foy, head of the NJTU – has drastically changed over the years.  When he first began representing NJDOT at these seminars currently short-haired Jake had a long pony tail.

The Jake and Alexis Show was bisected by an excellent buffet lunch included in the cost of the event.  Before lunch was “New Jersey Tax Updates” and after lunch was “New Jersey Property Tax Relief” and a discussion of “New Jersey Individual Income Tax Audit Procedures” by state auditor Robert Skala – certainly knowledgeable and experienced in the topic but not as good or polished a presenter as the NJTU guys.

There was nothing much new to report for NJ state taxes or property tax relief programs – either for 2016 or subsequent returns.  The speakers covered the few changes.  I will discuss what is new for the 2016 NJ-1040 in a subsequent post.  Here, however, are two items for 2016 filings worth emphasizing from the NJ presentation –

(1) No NJ refunds will be issued until March 1, 2017 – regardless of when the return is submitted.   

(2) All NJ state corporation income tax returns – CBT-100 and CBT-100S – for periods beginning January 1, 2016 and later must be filed electronically, regardless if prepared by an outside tax professional or done in house by the corporation.  The problem is that in order to file electronic state corporate income tax returns one must purchase commercial software – you cannot submit a corporate return directly to NJ free of charge via the NJDOT website, as you can with all sales and payroll tax returns and payments and some NJ-1040s.  Unlike the NJ-1040 filing mandate for tax preparers, there is NO “Opt-Out” option for corporate filers.  So the state is forcing every single truly small corporation with minimal activity to unnecessarily waste money purchasing commercial software.  I am not aware if this new mandate is required by legislation passed by the idiots in Trenton, or if this nonsense is just a regulation adopted by NJDOT.

{As an aside – it appears to me that the State of NJ does not want corporation filers.  First it made the minimum filing fee for a corporation $500.00 per year, and now this.}

The final presentation of the day, again as per usual, was “New York State Updates” from one of the chapter’s favorite speakers Kathryn Keane.  As with NJ, nothing of consequence changed in the filing of resident and non-resident individual income tax returns for 2016.  Kathryn mostly discussed administrative and operational issues with her usual humor.

Obviously, the value to the tax pro of this seminar usually depends on the degree of changes to tax law that affect current and ongoing filings.  There was not much new to discuss at this year’s seminar.  However the chapter did its usual great job and I thank NJ-NATP for presenting this excellent seminar each year.

TTFN









Tuesday, January 17, 2017

TAX EXPENDITURES AND TAX REFORM

The US Tax Code says “everything is taxable, except” and “nothing is deductible, except”.  It is the “excepts” that make the current code such a confusing and convoluted mucking fess.
 
The “excepts” are known as “tax expenditures” – deductions, credits, and exclusions from taxable income - and, according to the recent 2016 Annual Report to Congress by IRS Taxpayer Advocate Nina Olson, they cost the Treasury $1.42 Trillion in FY 2016.   
 
“Tax expenditures” include -
 
·   The distribution of federal social program benefits – such as welfare via the Earned Income Credit and refundable Child Tax Credit, student financial aid via the multiple education tax credits and deductions, assistance in paying for health insurance premiums and excessive medical expenses via the Premium Tax Credit and the deduction for medical expenses in excess of 10% of AGI, and rebates for energy-efficient purchases via the energy credits.  These are expenses of the federal government that are not paid directly from the budget and properly recorded by category, but “washed” through the Tax Code and distributed via the 1040 or 1040A, resulting in reduced gross income.  This does not belong in the Tax Code!
 
·   Incentives to encourage certain behavior – such as savings and investment, home ownership, and charitable giving. 
 
·   Allowance for the costs of generating taxable income – such as the itemized deductions for investment interest, employee business expenses and investment expenses.

The National Taxpayer Advocate is required by law to submit two annual reports to the House Committee on Ways and Means and the Senate Committee on Finance.  In the report just issued the Taxpayer Advocate has identified as the #1 legislative recommendation for Congress “TAX REFORM: Simplify the Internal Revenue Code Now” -
 

 
It has now been more than 30 years since Congress enacted the Tax Reform Act of 1986 to substantially simplify the tax code, and since that time, the code has grown more complex by the year, as evidenced by the fact that Congress has made more than 5,900 changes to the code — an average of more than one a day — just since 2001. The compliance burdens the tax code imposes on taxpayers and the IRS alike are overwhelming, and we urge Congress to act this year to vastly simplify it.”
 
Nina believes the current US Tax Code –
 
Undermines trust and confidence in the tax system, as many taxpayers do not understand how their taxes are computed or even what rate of tax they pay.”
 
And –
 
Leads to lower levels of tax compliance, as taxpayers make high rates of both inadvertent and deliberate errors, and the complexity of tax returns limits the IRS’s ability to detect noncompliance through audits or other means.”
 
As pointed out in a recent blog post by Ashlea Ebeling at FORBES.COM, she has recommended, as I have been recommending for years now –
 
“. . . that Congress start with a tax code without any tax expenditures, and then add a provision back in only if lawmakers decide that the public policy benefits of running the provision through the tax code outweigh the tax complexity burden the provision creates for taxpayers and the IRS.”
 
Nina has been calling for tax simplification and reform in her reports to Congress for years now, as I have in my posts here and editorials elsewhere.  She also correctly continues to call for, as I do, the repeal of the dreaded Alternative Minimum Tax.
 
I have identified my “Principles of Tax Reform” at my website A TAX PROFESSIONAL FOR TAX REFORM.  I also explain there why federal social welfare program benefits should not be distributed via the tax return.
 
For the first time in years everything is in place for substantive federal tax reform.  I expect tax reform legislation to be enacted relatively early in the year.  While I am almost certain that the idiots in Congress will not completely “get it right” – I can certainly hope.
 
TTFN
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Monday, January 16, 2017

WALK IN OUR DOOR AND WALK OUT WITH A CHECK!

When I returned to my car after visiting a business client in Jersey City on Sunday I found an ad from LIBERTY TAX on my windshield. 

The ad merely said “Get Up To $1,300 FAST!” in big print and “If you’re approved for Easy Advance*” in smaller print.

There was absolutely no mention that LIBERTY TAX preparers are knowledgeable and experienced in preparing 1040s and will be able to properly prepare your 1040 so that you will pay the absolute least amount of federal and state income tax legally allowable.

There was actually no mention of tax returns at all – just the picture of a much younger and more attractive Statue of Liberty wearing a LIBERTY TAX banner and holding a large dollar sign.  The ad just said, in effect, “Walk in our door and walk out with a check”.

The really small print referenced by the * after Easy Advance did say –

An Easy Advance (EA) {as opposed to an Enrolled Agent EA - rdf} is a loan secured by your tax refund”.

And also stated –

There are no fees or interest associated with the EA.”

But (highlight is mine) –

Loan amount options are determined by your expected tax refund less authorized fees.”

It doesn’t say whether the “authorized fees” are limited to the tax preparation fee.

Clearly LIBERTY TAX is preying on low income individuals who need fast cash and are more interested in the cash than preparing a correct return.

My advice to all taxpayers – never use Henry & Richard or LIBERTY TAX or JACKSON HEWITT or any fast food tax commercial chain to prepare your federal and state income tax returns.  You will pay less money, get more personal service, and actually get a properly prepared return by using an independent tax professional. 

You can look for an independent tax pro at FIND A TAX PROFESSIONAL.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

WHAT’S THE BUZZ, TELL ME WHAT’S A HAPPENNIN’

I didn’t think Henry and Richard’s tv ads could get any more stupid than the ones they ran last year – with the buffoon in the bow-tie jumping out of a plane.  But I was wrong.  This year’s ads are even dumber!

Be aware that Henry and Richard ain’t cheap.  Another reason why H&R needs to overcharge for its services – it is paying John Hamm to appear in the ads!

Obviously I do not believe anyone should use Henry and Richard to prepare their tax return.  You will get more and better personal service from an independent tax professional – and may actually pay less.

* Once again “Taxpayer Advocate Urges Congress To Reform The IRS And Overhaul The Tax Code”, according to Ashlea Ebeling at FORBES.COM.

Nina Olsen, in her annual report to Congress, explained her “#1 legislative priority is for Congress to overhaul the tax code

Ashlea tells us –

Olson recommends that Congress start with a tax code without any tax expenditures, and then add a provision back in only if lawmakers decide that the public policy benefits of running the provision through the tax code outweigh the tax complexity burden the provision creates for taxpayers and the IRS.”

It sounds like Nina has visited my website “A Tax Professional for Tax Reform” or read my frequent posts on tax reform.  I have been saying exactly the same thing for years.

Some of Nina’s recommendations for tax reform include –

“• Repeal the Alternative Minimum Tax for individuals
• Consolidate the family status provisions in the tax code
• Consolidate at least 12 incentives to save or spend for education
• Consolidate at least 15 incentives to save for retirement
• Simplify worker classification determinations to minimize employee-versus-independent-contract disputes
• Eliminate incentives to enact tax laws that expire or sunset
• Eliminate phase-outs of tax benefits as income rises
• Streamline the more than 170 civil penalties in the tax code

Good recommendations all.  I have also called for the elimination of phase-outs of tax benefits as income rises for years now.

From Nina’s mouth, via her report, to God’s ears!

 * Kay Bell, the yellow rose of taxes, talks about the importance of “Keeping track of tax deductible miles” at DON’T MESS WITH TAXES.

Excellent advice in the bottom line to the post –

. . . keep up with your miles as you travel. It's easier than trying to recreate them months later at tax-filing time.

Plus, your contemporaneous mileage records will be much more convincing if the IRS ever questions your driving deductions.”

* KB had a post titled “Where to find your perfect tax preparer”.  If you want to find the perfect tax preparer for your situation begin your search at FIND A TAX PROFESSIONAL.

* A post on Spacebook from a NY state tax professional explains –

New York residents: If your tax professional asks you for your DRIVER'S LICENSE as part of your tax return filing this year, they are not crazy.

NY now requires the taxpayer and spouse to include their driver's license on all e-filed resident and non-resident income tax returns.”

Part of new regulations to protect taxpayers from identity theft.  NJ also asks for a driver’s license, but I do believe this is still voluntary.

Thanks, John Sheeley EA, for the word!

* At STIKKS TALT TAXES “Stikks” (aka Jamaal Soloman) continues his series of “Quick Tax Tips For The Tax Season” with Tip #5 – “Tax Credit for Saving Money!!!”.

The post tells you how to “Plan Now to Get Full Benefit of Saver’s Credit; Tax Credit Helps Low- and Moderate-Income Workers Save for Retirement”.

* TaxGirl Kelly Phillips Erb reports “New Taxes Send The Price Of Gas Soaring In Some States” at FORBES.COM.

My home state of PA is on the list of the most expensive states for gas, actually slightly more expensive than New York.  Luckily I live close to NJ border and travel into the “Garden State” at least every-other week, so I usually fill-up there.  However, thanks to a state gas tax increase at the end of 2016, NJ is no longer on the list of the least expensive states for gas – although still much better than PA and NY.

* And KPE brings back her popular series “Getting To Know You Tuesday” by introducing us to Enrolled Agent “Stuart Hack”.

An interesting personal anecdote from Stuart provides some good advice –

When my daughter was born 19 years ago, I read in Money Magazine that if I invested $200 a month in an index fund, I would have $100,000 by the time she's ready for College. I did, the account had over $100,000 and since she goes to a Public State University not only is College paid for, but she will have money left over to invest once she graduates.”

* Attention fellow tax pros - the IRS has announced the dates for the 2017 Nationwide Tax Forums:

Orlando, FL = July 11-13
Dallas, TX = July 25-27
National Harbor, MD = August 22-24
Las Vegas, NV = August 29-31
San Diego, CA = September 12-14

* Ever wonder “Why Does the IRS Care So Much About Employee vs. Contractor?  Jason Dinesen provides the answers, including a cynical one, at DINESEN TAX TIMES.

* A good reminder from Professor Jim Maule at MAULED AGAIN – “Don’t Forget to Sign the Return”!  

* From the CCH weekday-daily news headlines e-letter – “Ryan Says Repeal and Replacement of ACA to be Concurrent; Democrats Question Components”.

Let us hope that is true and that both repeal and replacement are included in the same legislation.

* The NSTP BLOG provides a “quick primer on medical account options” in “Comparing Tax-Favored HAS, HRA & FSA Medical Options”. 

The Last Word –

Trump’s plan to supposedly avoid conflict of interests while in office is totally unacceptable.

Blogger Daniel Shaviro has identified three ways a President can make money through his businesses, absent a blind trust –

One is to shape government policies, procurement decisions, etcetera, to favor his businesses. A second is to get business from others who seek to curry favor (the emoluments issue). A third is to have the businesses act on inside information about impending news before it becomes public.”

You can be sure Trump knows about, and will take full advantage of, all three if he can.

Write to your Congresscritters and tell them to support the bill discussed in “Elizabeth Warren and Democrats introduce bill to push Trump to divest businesses”.

Nothing less than what this legislation calls for should be acceptable for any President of any party.  It had been standard practice by Presidents in the past, who acted out of ethical responsibility.  The law now becomes a necessity because of Trump’s arrogance and greed.

The legislation looks to require ‘the president, vice president, their spouses and minor or dependent children to divest all interests that create financial conflicts of interest placing those assets in a true blind trust,’ according to a fact sheet from Warren's office. It ‘will be managed by an independent trustee who will oversee the sale of assets and place the proceeds in conflict-free holdings.’

It also includes a symbolic statement that the president skirting ethics rules constitutes ‘a high crime or misdemeanor under the impeachment clause of the U.S. Constitution.’"

TTFN

 
 NO tax software package, or online filing service, is a substitute for knowledge of the Tax Code, and NO tax software package, or online filing service, is a substitute for a competent, experienced tax professional.
 
Do you need to find a qualified and competent tax professional?
 








Friday, January 13, 2017

WHO MUST FILE A 2016 TAX RETURN?

Do you have to file a 2016 tax return?  Let’s review.
 
Generally, you do not have to file a federal 2016 Form 1040, or 1040A, unless your “gross income” is at least -
 
Single = 10,350
 
Single, Age 65 or Older = 11,900 
 
Head of Household (with one dependent) = 17,400
 
Married Couple = 20,700
 
Family of 4 = 28,800
 
Married Couple, Both 65 or Older = 23,200
 
“Gross income” means –
 
All income you received in the form of money, goods, property, and services that is not exempt from tax, including any income from sources outside the United States or from the sale of your main home (even if you can exclude part or all of it). Do not include any social security benefits unless (a) you are married filing a separate return and you lived with your spouse at any time in 2014 or (b) one-half of your social security benefits plus your other gross income and any tax-exempt interest is more than $25,000 ($32,000 if married filing jointly).” 
 
Gross income includes gains, but not losses, reported on Form 8949 or Schedule D.  If you are a sole proprietor filing a Schedule C, gross income is the amount reported on Line 7 of Part 1 – gross receipts less returns and allowances and cost of goods sold plus “other income”.  And if you are a landlord gross income includes the gross rents reported on Schedule E.
 
So you see that the filing requirements are not based on actual "net" taxable income.  For any type of business income or capital gains the income before deducting any expenses or deducting the cost basis of investments sold is counted.  You must file a return to identify the expenses and cost basis.
 
You must file a tax return for a dependent if any of the following applies –
* unearned income is more than $1,050
* earned income is more than $6,300, or
* gross income is more than the greater of $1,050 or the sum of $350 and the individual's earned income (total not more than $6,300).
 
Regardless of your gross income, you generally must file an income tax return if
 
* you had net self-employment income of $400 or more,
* you owe household employment taxes,
* you owe additional taxes on premature retirement plan distributions
* you failed to take a required minimum distribution from a retirement plan,
* you must repay the 2008 Homebuyer Credit,
* you owe Social Security and Medicare taxes on unreported tip income, or
* you received an advance payment on the Premium Tax Credit.
 
And, whether or not you are required to do so, you should file a tax return to get a refund of tax withheld or to take advantage of a refundable tax credit like the Earned Income Credit or the Additional Child Tax Credit.
 
Another reason to file a tax return, even if you are not legally required to do so, is to start the clock running on the normally 3-year statute of limitations for IRS audit or review of a return. 
 
The numbers for individual state income tax returns differ.  You may not have to file a federal return, but you must, or should, file a state return.  For example, the State of Pennsylvania is a gross income tax with no personal exemptions or standard, or itemized, deductions.  You must file a PA-40 and pay the 3.07% flat state income tax if “you received total PA gross taxable income in excess of $33”. 
 
Any questions?  Ask your, or a, tax professional.  To find a qualified tax professional in your area go to FIND A TAX PROFESSIONAL.
 
Would you like to know “What’s New In Taxes for 2016”?  Click here.  
 
TTFN
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Monday, January 9, 2017

WHAT’S THE BUZZ, TELL ME WHAT’S A HAPPENNIN’

It is very important that anyone who voted for Trump watch this video!!!  Please click here.

* OOPS! I forgot to mention last week that I made TaxGirl Kelly Phillips Erb’s list of “100 Must-Follow Tax Twitter Accounts For 2017” at FORBES.COM   .

So, please, do follow me on Twitter.


Her excellent bottom line -

Keeping accurate, contemporaneous records is your best bet.”

I also discuss “Starting the Year Off Right” tax-wise in my new quarterly newsletter ROBERT D FLACH’S TAX INSIGHTS.

* For a KPE trifecta – ICYMI “The Complete List For 12 Days Of Charitable Giving 2016”.

*What’s this – a 4th BUZZ-worth post from KPW – making it a “hambone” in professional bowling parlance? 

The Top Tax Posts You Did - And Didn't -Read In 2016” lists the most, and least, popular of Kelly’s 2016 blog posts based on actual views.

* ACCOUNTING TODAY brings us the word that “Senate Democrats unveil bill requiring Trump to release tax returns” -

Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., the ranking Democrat on the Senate Finance Committee, introduced legislation Wednesday requiring President-elect Donald Trump to release the three most recent years of his tax returns.

Several other Senate Democrats joined Wyden in introducing the bill, known as the Presidential Tax Transparency Act, which would also require future presidential nominees to release three years of tax returns.”

Unfortunately, with the Republicans in control of Congress, there is doubt this can pass – although we can hope there are some Republicans in Congress with integrity and a conscience. 

I doubt idiot Trump will ever release any tax returns unless under penalty of impeachment. 

* The NSTP BLOG reminds small business owners of the new “Increase in Information Return Penalties”.  

* Have you read the January 1, 2017 issue of LIBERTY TIMES yet?  I explain how the Republican Party, by pandering to the religious right, has perverted true conservative philosophy, and identify the “theme song” of the upcoming disastrous Trump administration.  

* Jamaal “Stikks” Solomon begins a post series of “Quick Tax Tips for the Tax Season” with “Dude, Where is My Refund?!!!” at STIKKS TALKS TAXES.

For those who use a tax pro to prepare their returns, here is what my January letter to clients says about refunds-

Clients often email me to tell me they have not received their refund and ask me to find out what happened.  I cannot do this!  Do not contact me if your refund is late – there is nothing I can do that you cannot do yourself.  Once I have returned your finished return to you, and you have mailed it to the appropriate “uncle” (Sam, Chris, Andy), its fate is out of my hands.  You can check on the status of your refund online.”  


Important points made by JS.  First, be sure to read completely the return before signing, and do not sign if you do not recognize deductions or understand something on the return.  And second, make sure the preparer signs the return and includes his or her PTIN before accepting and paying for it.

Stikks will continue to deal with fraudulent tax professionals in future posts.

* The EMPOWERED TAX LAW LLC BLOG has some advice for S-corporation owners in a discussion of a recent Tax Court case in “S Corporation Owner Subject to Self-Employment Tax

* Kay Bell looks both back and forward in “Top 10 tax topics of 2016 and what to expect in 2017” at DON’T MESS WITH TAXES.


* An FYI from Jeff Stimpson at ACCOUNTING TODAY – “IRS processed 150mn returns in 2016" -

The IRS reports that it processed 150,018,266 returns from last season through Nov. 23. Income tax collected after credits was $1,416,834,888.”

* Robert W Wood warns “IRS Forms 1099 Are Coming, Packing A Tax Punch” at FORBES.COM.

RWW’s bottom line is very important -

Forms 1099 are a vital part of IRS matching. Take these forms seriously. The IRS sure does.”

* I agree with Jason Dinesen’s post “From the Archives” – “The IRS’s Preparer Directory Will Be Bad News for Enrolled Agents”.

I specifically agree that “the directory provides little useful information for taxpayers”.

If the IRS is going to provide a directory of tax preparers it should be a state-by-state alphabetical listing of all PTIN holders – everyone who is authorized by the IRS to prepare 1040s (and 1040As) for compensation – without exception.  It may list a person’s recognized credentials, including the ACAT ATA and ATP, after one’s name, but it should not indicate in any way that a PTIN-holder without an official credential is not an “IRS-approved” tax preparer.

* While repeal of Obamacare, and hopefully replacement, is eminent, it is important to know that, as per the CCH weekday daily email newsletter, “Some ACA Provisions Could Continue Temporarily Post-Repeal”.

Obviously it would be best if the replacement of good Obamcare provisions were included in the legislation that repeals ACA.  But remember that we are dealing with Congress, and Congress is still made up, for the most part, of idiots.

* Let me end on a non-1040 item – although state taxes certainly do play a big part in the issue.

It came as no surprise to me that, as per 101.5 FM, “More people leave NJ than any other state, study shows”.

For the fourth straight year, New Jersey finished dead last in the 39th annual United Van Lines’ National Movers Study.”

There are lots of reasons to leave New Jersey and many benefits of living elsewhere – I should know, having moved from NJ to North East PA in 2012 after living my entire life (except for a summer in NY) in the “Garden State”.

I am curious if the recent state tax law changes – increased retirement income exclusion and end of state Estate Tax - will affect the migration from NJ going forward.

The Last Word –

We must not “normalize” Trump now that he is the President-elect.

Trump is not a “normal” or “legitimate” politician.  He must not be viewed and treated in the same context as a Bush or Romney or McCain, or a Clinton or Obama or Saunders, or a Ryan or Cruz or Kasich.

Trump is a totally self-absorbed narcissist, a pathological liar, and possibly a sociopath, without any true political beliefs or convictions, whose mental disorders make him incapable of intelligent and rational thought and action.

He must not be accepted or supported or respected as President by the American people.  He should be denounced and opposed as the dangerous and mentally unstable person that he is.

TTFN