IIAA Supports Bill to End Death Taxes

February 1, 2001

The Independent Insurance Agents of America expressed approval over the introduction in the U.S. House of Representatives of legislation to eliminate estate and gift taxes. IIAA is supporting the Death Tax Elimination Act introduced by Reps. Jennifer Dunn (R-Wash.) and John Tanner (D-Tenn.).

The measure is cosponsored by 175 House members from both parties. More co-sponsors are expected as the measure begins moving through the legislative process.

IIAA president William F. Hofmann III said the Death Tax Elimination Act is great news for family-owned independent insurance agencies in the U.S. Similar legislation to repeal estate taxes was approved by Congress last year but was vetoed by then-President Bill Clinton.

The Dunn-Tanner proposal seeks to phase out estate and gift taxes over a 10-year period following its enactment. Under the legislation, current estate and gift tax rates would be reduced by five percent each year until they are completely eliminated. It also would create an immediate $1.3 million unified tax credit.

Dunn and Tanner are members of the House of Representative’s tax-writing Ways and Means Committee, which will have jurisdiction over the proposal. IIAA vice president of Federal Government Affairs Maria L. Berthoud praised Dunn and Tanner for their leadership on the issue and said that ending estate and gift taxes is a priority for IIAA and its small business-based membership. IIAA will be working with Dunn and Tanner and other private-sector organizations to build support on Capitol Hill to pass estate tax repeal legislation in this Congress.

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