Tax Refund

IRS details falling audit rates. During fiscal year 2022, the IRS collected more than $4.9 trillion in gross taxes, processed more than 262.8 million tax returns and other forms, and issued more than $641.7 billion in tax refunds. Its annual data book released last week also notes that the overall individual audit rate fell from 0.5 percent in tax year 2017 to 0.3 percent in tax year 2018, the most recent year of data made public.

California awards $80.5 million in tax incentives for television shows. Seven series, including two that are relocating to California, will receive $80.5 million in tax incentives for filming in the state. Amazon garnered $35.3 million in credits. The remaining credits went to Paramount Global, 20th Century Studios, Netflix, and HBO. Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) signed a bill in 2021 that increased the annual cap on the tax credit program by $180 million over a two-year period. The new law also expanded eligibility criteria to include projects that filmed their pilot episode in another state.

The Inflation Reduction Act’s electric vehicle tax credit applies in full to ten car models. Sixteen models qualify for at least some of the credit. A list released yesterday indicates which all-electric, plug-in hybrid, and fuel cell electric vehicles that, if purchased new in 2023 or after, are eligible for the federal income tax credit of up to $7,500. A White House official told The Hill that about 65 percent of first-quarter electric vehicle sales qualified for the tax credit.

Will Minnesota Democrats agree on a state budget?  Members of the state’s Democratic Farmer Labor Party have so far been unified around tax and budget planning for the state’s large surplus, but will the unity last? They’ve advocated for tax and fee increases since much of Minnesota’s $17.5 billion surplus is one-time money. Republicans have already objected, and some DFL members have signaled that not all proposed increases will survive the legislative session.

A schmear in any other place remains a schmear. In New York State, if you purchase a “prepared” bagel—one that is sliced and schmeared with cream cheese—you’ll pay a sales tax rate of 8.875 percent. But today, in honor of Tax Day, you can buy a “stuffed bagel” at one bagel shop and pay no tax. Apparently, an H&H bagel injected with Philadelphia cream cheese remains a “baked” (and thereby tax-exempt) good. It’s not clear why using a knife counts as a preparation tool while using a pastry tool does not.


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