Upcoming National Meeting

2019 Canadian Tax Workshop For U.S. Companies

2 ½ day workshop covering the key tax issues that U.S. companies outside of Canada who are doing business with Canadians or in Canada need to know. The primary focus of the workshop will be on GST, HST and Income Tax. It will also cover QST, Payroll and Property Taxes. An interactive audit session covering Canadian taxes is also planned.

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Newsletters & Media

Cost Conscious

ISSUE 19-18; September 6, 2019

Transfer Pricing Audit Activity – Several COST members have reported increased transfer pricing audit activity by states that have engaged RoyaltyStat or other third-party consultants. Concern continues to grow about the tactics used during such audits, such as aggressive use of novel transfer pricing theories and excessive IDRs that appear to be designed to force settlements. Which of the followi


Bloomberg TAX

IRS Expands Housing Tax Credits After California Wildfires


The IRS is expanding low-income housing credit for disaster relief to California individuals affected by destructive wildfires last year in Butte, Los Angeles, and Ventura counties.

Utah Leaves Medical Marijuana Sales to Private Sector


Utah lawmakers have cleared the way for a small number of private pharmacies to sell medical marijuana, beginning Jan. 1.

State of Wayfair: Louisiana Proposes Guidance, Requirements (1)


Lawmakers in Louisiana are keeping busy on the Wayfair front.

Puerto Rico Excise Tax Fix May Postpone Debt Agreement: MMA


Ending Puerto Rico’s excise tax on multinational manufacturers could delay an historic debt-restructuring deal with bondholders, according to Municipal Market Analytics.

Treasury to Combine Two Sets of Opportunity Zone Rules (1)


The Treasury Department intends to merge its two sets of proposed opportunity zone regulations into one set of final rules, an official said.

INSIGHT: Utah Court Refuses to Extend Protections of Foreign Commerce Clause to Individuals


Utah’s highest court may have lit the fuse to launch what could be the next big state tax issue to make it the U.S. Supreme Court. Steven Wlodychak of Ernst & Young LLP and Bruce Ely of Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP question the Utah Supreme Court’s ruling that the protections of the foreign commerce clause don’t apply to individuals.

Challenge to Chicago's Netflix Tax Heads to Appeals Court


Chicago's "Netflix tax” is an unconstitutional extraterritorial tax, customers of streaming entertainment services will contend during oral arguments before an Illinois appeals court.

INSIGHT: The Gig Economy Could Change How Employers Gear for Next Recession


The current gig economy—where 37% of U.S. workers do freelance work—makes planning for the next recession much different from the Great Recession of 2008. Lisa Hogan, chair of Brownstein's employment and labor group, says HR teams might have to flex their RIF muscles, but how businesses decide to restructure will be very different this time.

Grassley, Wyden Issue Subpoenas in Land Deals Investigation (1)


The Senate’s two top tax-writers issued subpoenas to six individuals seeking more information on tax-advantaged land deals known as syndicated conservation easements.

Alabama DOR Announces New Sales and Use Tax Rates in County of Tallapoosa


The Alabama Department of Revenue (DOR) Sept. 1 announced changes to sales and use tax rates in the county of Tallapoosa effective Sept. 1. The new tax rates include: 1) a two percent general rate, including admissions to places of amusement and entertainment; 2) a two percent for the retail selling price of food for human consumption sold through vending machines; 3) a 0.200 percent for the net difference paid for machines, machinery, and equipment used in growing farm products, machines and parts and attachments for machines used in manufacturing tangible personal property, and for the net difference paid for all automotive vehicles, truck trailers, semi-trailers, and house trailers; and 4) a $2 withdrawal fee for automotive vehicle dealers. The taxes can be remitted through the DOR's online filing system. [Ala. Dep't of Revenue, Local Tax Rate Notice, 09/13/19]

Tax Notes

Kentucky Gubernatorial Candidate Commits to Gaming Expansion


Kentucky Attorney General and gubernatorial candidate Andy Beshear (D) said he is committed to expanding gaming in the state and using the tax revenues to fund Kentucky’s pension system.

Michigan Sports Betting Bill Mirrors Stalled Internet Gaming Bill


A Michigan lawmaker has introduced a bill that would legalize and tax sports gambling at 8 percent, the same tax rate proposed in the recent internet gaming bills opposed by the governor and the state budget office.

D.C. Report Examines Worker Misclassification in Construction Industry


District of Columbia construction companies that misclassify workers as independent contractors have lower operating costs than companies that properly classify workers, according to a recent report on payroll fraud and tax evasion in the industry.

Wisconsin Bill Would Double Opportunity Zone Tax Incentive


A Wisconsin bill would double the state's Opportunity Zone tax incentive, which lawmakers and economic developers hope will give it an advantage over other states.

Issues Over Wayfair Reference to ‘Undue Burden’ Coming to the Fore


A year after the U.S. Supreme Court decided South Dakota v. Wayfair Inc., state tax experts are starting to zero in on the Court’s reference to and reshaping of the concept of “undue burden.”

Nebraska County Approves 'Beatrice 6' Sales Tax


A Nebraska county will impose a half-cent sales tax to pay off a $28.1 million court judgment over the wrongful imprisonment of the "Beatrice Six."

California Pot Banking Bill on Hold


A California bill to allow specially licensed banks to provide limited services to the state's legal cannabis industry has been put on hold until 2020.

California Legislature Passes Pot Business Expense Deduction Bill


A California bill to allow marijuana businesses to claim state income tax deductions against their expenses and state business tax credits now heads to Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) for approval.

Chicago Mayor Turns to Congestion Taxes as Revenue-Raising Option


Chicago is turning to a possible congestion tax as an option to address a looming $838 million deficit in 2020.

Arizona High Court Says Online Travel Companies Owe Local Taxes


Online travel companies must pay local business activity taxes on the revenue they receive for arranging hotel stays in Arizona, according to the state’s supreme court.

Featured Resources

COST - Council on State Taxation

Amicus Briefs

Jefferson Parish v. Walmart.com

COST filed an amicus brief on the merits on June 20, 2019 stressing to the Louisiana Supreme Court that a marketplace facilitator does not meet the definition of a “dealer” under the State’s law, violates due process because adequate notice was not provided, and the Parish of Jefferson’s interpretation could result in retroactive imposition of a tax from the Louisiana Dep’t of Revenue and 62 other

COST - Council on State Taxation

COST Studies, Articles & Reports

2019 State and Local Amnesty Programs

This report tracks state and local tax amnesty programs by state for 2019.

COST - Council on State Taxation

COST Comments & Testimony

Comments on TB-92, Sourcing of GILTI and FDII

COST comments to the New Jersey Division of Taxation on TB-92, issued August 22, 2019, concerning the sourcing of global intangible low-taxed income (GILTI) under IRC Sec. 951A and foreign derived intangible income (FDII) under IRC Sec. 250.