Congress Passes $42 Billion Tax Extenders Package: The Primary Tax Extenders Affecting The Real Estate Industry

On Tuesday, December 16th the U.S. Senate passed H.R. 5771 by a 76 to 16 vote reviving dozens of previously expired tax breaks for calendar year 2014 only.

Republicans and Democrats compromised on the one-year extension after the White House undercut negotiations on a broader bipartisan package, underscoring divisions between Democrats in the wake of this year’s heavy losses at the election polls this past November. Senators from both parties indicated that they would have preferred legislation that would have restored the tax extenders through calendar year 2015 (e.g., a 2 year extension package that would have retroactively reinstated the tax extenders for calendar year 2014 and forward through all of calendar year 2015). The bill is now awaiting President Obama’s signature in order for the bill to become law. It is highly anticipated that the President will sign this bill into law before the calendar year-end.

The primary tax extenders affecting the Real Estate industry include, but are not limited to:

• I.R.C. § 168 provision allowing 15-year Straight-Line Cost Recovery for Qualified Leasehold Improvements, Qualified Restaurant Buildings and Improvements, and Qualified Retail Improvements;

• I.R.C. § 168 Bonus First-Year Depreciation (i.e., for certain property with longer production periods, the property must be placed in service before 01/01/16);

• I.R.C. § 45 Tax Credits with respect to Facilities Producing Energy from Certain Renewable Sources;

• I.R.C. § 45L Energy Tax Credit for Energy-Efficient New Homes; and

• I.R.C. § 179D Energy Tax Deduction for Building Envelope Efficiency.

It should be duly noted that the tax extenders are for a one year period retroactive to January 1, 2014. Property that qualifies for I.R.C. § 179 and for Bonus depreciation must be placed in service prior to December 31, 2014.

For legislative updates from Capitol Hill and complete coverage of the latest statutory, administrative, and judicial interpretations please connect with Peter J. Scalise on TaxConnections.

Peter J. Scalise serves as the Federal Tax Credits & Incentives Practice Leader for Prager Metis CPAs, LLC a member of The Prager Metis International Group. Peter is a highly distinguished BIG 4 Alumni Tax Practice Leader and has approximately twenty years of progressive public accounting experience developing, managing and leading multi-million dollar tax advisory practices on both a regional and national level.

Peter is a highly acclaimed thought leader in the fields of accounting and taxation with deep subject matter expertise in connection to designing, implementing and defending sustainable methodologies for specialty tax incentives including, but not limited to, research tax incentives; orphan drug credits; therapeutic discovery credits; accounting methods and periods; energy tax incentives in connection to green building envelope efficiency and benchmarking, solar energy, bio energies, fuel cells, wind turbines, micro turbines, and geothermal systems; and comprehensive fixed asset analysis incorporating principles of construction tax planning, cost segregation analysis and the final treasury regulations governing tangible property.

Peter is a renowned keynote speaker and an extensively published author on specialty tax incentives, tax controversy matters, and legislative updates from Capitol Hill for NAREIT, AGRION, USGBC, AICPA, ASTP, NATP, ABA, AIA, and TEI. Peter serves as a member of the Tax Faculty for CPAacademy, iShade and TaxConnections University (“TCU”). Peter serves on both the Board of Directors and Board of Editors for The American Society of Tax Professionals (“ASTP”) and is the Founding President and Chairman of The Northeastern Region Tax Roundtable.

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