WASHINGTON (4/22/13)--Former Sen. Alan Simpson, a Republican, and former White House Chief of Staff Erskine Bowles, who worked for the Clinton White House, released a new versiono of their self-named Simpson-Bowles tax reform and debt-reduction plan Friday.
The authors are co-chairs of President Obama's Deficit Commission and they are proposing nearly $2.5 trillion in reduced spending and increased tax revenues over ten years. On the tax side of the equation, the duo offer "the Zero Plan," which strips all expenditures and then rebuilds the tax code from the bottom up.
The Credit Union National Association noted last week (News Now April 16), the "zero plan" idea reflects an approach that is gaining more attention in Washington.
The Simpson-Bowles proposals, which made their first round in 2010, were unable at that time to garner enough support to be approved by the U.S. Congress. However, as CUNA President/CEO Bill Cheney said in his weekly newsletter, The Cheney Report, Friday, it remains to be seen to what degree this new version will be embraced on Capitol Hill.
Cheney also noted that the emergence of Simpson-Bowles 2.0, as some are already calling it, is "another stark reminder of how serious Washington is this year about moving forward on broad tax reform--and how serious we must all be about preserving credit unions' tax status."
Preserving the credit union tax status is a top issue for CUNA, and the group has been meeting with Washington's tax policy writers to educate them about the public policy reasons that dictate the credit union tax status.
CUNA also provides its members with an online toolkit to help credit unions educate members about the value and benefits of credit unions. CUNA research has shown that when credit union members understand the value of membership, they will work with credit unions to defend their tax status.