Feed aggregator

IRS Announces that it will Review Whether to Rescind or Modify Estate Valuation Proposed Regulations

Office of Advocacy - Tue, 07/18/2017 - 5:18pm

On July 7, 2017, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued Notice 2017-38,  that announced the agency would reviewing whether to rescind or modify proposed regulations (REG-163113-02) relating to the valuation of interests in a closely-held partnership or corporation for estate, gift, and generation-skipping transfer tax purposes.

Categories: Latest News, SBA Advocate

U.S. Department of Agriculture Seeks Information on Existing Rules

Office of Advocacy - Tue, 07/18/2017 - 4:05pm

Pursuant to Executive Order 13777, “Enforcing the Regulatory Reform Agenda” the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) is requesting information to assist in identifying existing regulations that should be modified or repealed. 

USDA requests comments on several questions including the following:

Categories: Latest News, SBA Advocate

Report Recommends Restoring Gulf Coast Passenger Rail Service

WASHINGTON - The Gulf Coast Working Group released a report to Congress last night that recommended restoring daily round trip Amtrak train service between New Orleans and Orlando.

The working group, which outlined a number of steps that would have to be taken before service is restored, cited the potential for expanded tourism and business travel along with improved access to jobs, education and healthcare among the reasons it recommended restoring the route.

Amtrak service between New Orleans and Orlando was suspended in 2005 due to significant damage caused by Hurricane Katrina.

“This report makes clear the need to restore passenger rail service along the Gulf Coast and provides a path to get us there,” said U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL), who helped create the working group Congress approved as part of the FAST Act in 2015.  “While there’s lots of work ahead, this service will not only help us meet the future transportation needs of the region but could also be a boon for tourism and the local economy. “

 

Report Recommends Restoration of Gulf Coast Passenger Rail Service

WASHINGTON - The Gulf Coast Working Group released a report to Congress last night that recommended restoring daily round trip Amtrak train service between New Orleans and Orlando.

The working group, which outlined a number of steps that would have to be taken before service is restored, cited the potential for expanded tourism and business travel along with improved access to jobs, education and healthcare among the reasons it recommended restoring the route.

Amtrak service between New Orleans and Orlando was suspended in 2005 due to significant damage caused by Hurricane Katrina.

“This report makes clear the need to restore passenger rail service along the Gulf Coast and provides a path to get us there,” said U.S. Sen. Bill Nelson (D-FL), who helped create the working group Congress approved as part of the FAST Act in 2015.  “While there’s lots of work ahead, this service will not only help us meet the future transportation needs of the region but could also be a boon for tourism and the local economy. “

Click here for a copy of the report.

Chairwoman Foxx Opening Statement: Hearing on “ESSA Implementation: Exploring State and Local Reform Efforts”

Education & the Workforce Committee - Tue, 07/18/2017 - 12:00am
ESSA can be considered a milestone for K-12 policy because it was a monumental shift in  the role states and school districts would have in the future of education.

ESSA sought to achieve two specific goals for K-12 education: autonomy and accountability.

States and school districts were given new independence when creating a K-12 education program that works best for their own students, ending a “Washington knows best” approach to education.

Additionally, ESSA specifically prohibited the federal government from influencing states’ adoption of particular standards. It also repealed federal mandates for teacher performance and protected a state’s right to opt-out of federal education programs.

Part of ESSA’s goal for state and school district autonomy was to force Washington to remain at arm’s length from states and school districts when it comes to education, and rest assured that this committee will be watching to ensure Washington keeps its distance.

While states and school districts were given more autonomy in ESSA, the law maintains provisions ensuring parents have transparent information about school performance and states and districts can hold schools accountable for delivering a high-quality education to all students.

ESSA also included unprecedented restrictions on the Department of Education’s authority to take back the state and local flexibility guaranteed by the law.

ESSA has stripped away powers of the Department of Education, such as the ability of the Secretary of Education to legislate through executive fiat, or the ability of the Department’s bureaucrats to substitute their judgment for states’.

History made it clear that a top down approach to K-12 education did not serve students, teachers, parents, or the states well, and ESSA directly addressed those shortcomings.

Given the monumental shift in education policy represented by ESSA, it is important that we hear how implementation is progressing. We know the law will not fully take effect until the coming school year, and we will need time to assess its impact on schools and students. However, I look forward to hearing from today’s witnesses about the progress states, school districts, and the Department of Education are making.

This committee has been keeping a close eye on this implementation process. Last year, we held four hearings on implementation of ESSA. Today, we will continue our discussion on ESSA’s implementation.

ESSA was truly a change for K-12 education, and I do believe this bipartisan law delivers the proper balance of autonomy and accountability to parents and taxpayers, while ensuring a limited federal role.

This law has the ability to empower state and local leaders to change K-12 education for the better, and that is why it is of utmost importance to this committee.

Days Apart, Second and Sixth Circuits Muddy the Waters on Class Ascertainability

WLF Legal Pulse - Mon, 07/17/2017 - 1:51pm
 Whether federal district courts may certify a damages class action where no reliable, administratively feasible method exists for identifying class members is a question that has long plagued class-action defendants. The need for class ascertainability is especially dire in low-value consumer class actions in which manufacturers, distributors, and retailers are sued over “mislabeled” food, beverages, […]
Categories: Latest News

Fourth Circuit Upholds Application of Government-Contractor Defense in Asbestos Suit

WLF Legal Pulse - Mon, 07/17/2017 - 10:31am
Featured Expert Contributor: Mass Torts—Asbestos Robert H. Wright, a Partner with Horvitz & Levy LLP in Los Angeles, CA The US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit recently applied the Boyle government-contractor defense to a failure-to-warn claim in an asbestos case.  Sawyer v. Foster Wheeler LLC, 860 F.3d 249 (4th Cir. 2017).  In doing […]
Categories: Latest News

ICYMI: Congress Must Act to Protect Local Businesses From Joint Employer Scheme

Education & the Workforce Committee - Mon, 07/17/2017 - 12:00am


By Chairwoman Virginia Foxx

Far too often in Washington, D.C., when you have a hammer, everything looks like a nail. That certainly seemed to be the mindset of government bureaucrats during the Obama administration.

In an attempt to solve a problem that didn’t exist, bureaucrats who have never owned a business or made a payroll distorted the definition of what it means to be an employer. It began with the National Labor Relations Board’s 2015 ruling in the Browning-Ferris Industries case, which dramatically expanded the joint employer standard. Then, the Obama administration took this radical policy a step further.

Read the full op-ed published by The Hill here.

Thune and Wyden Urge President to Prioritize Digital Trade in NAFTA Re-Negotiation

U.S. Sens. John Thune (R-S.D.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation and member of the Senate Finance Committee, and Ron Wyden (D-Ore.), ranking member of the Senate Finance Committee, urged President Donald J. Trump to prioritize digital trade in a renegotiated NAFTA and “set the highest possible bar” for the internet’s economic potential.

House Passes NDAA with Small Business Reforms

House Small Business Committee News - Fri, 07/14/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON - Today, the House passed H.R. 2810, the FY2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which includes small business contracting reforms and entrepreneurial development provisions introduced by the House Small Business Committee.

The NDAA included two House Small Business Committee bills, H.R. 1773, the Clarity for America’s Small Contractors Act of 2017, introduced by Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH) and H.R. 1774, the Developing the Next Generation of Small Business Act of 2017, introduced by Ranking Member Nydia Velázquez (D-NY).

“Small businesses play a critical role in our nation’s defense, whether creating the latest technology, saving taxpayer dollars by providing less costly contracting, or hiring workers who create parts. I’m proud of the bipartisan work this Committee puts forth for small businesses and would like to thank Ranking Member Nydia Velázquez (D-NY) and all the other Members who introduced provisions that were included in this year’s NDAA,” said House Small Business Committee Chairman Steve Chabot (R-OH).

“The NDAA bill contains a package of bipartisan, small business legislative proposals that will help small firms win their share of federal contracts, strengthen entrepreneurial development programs and assist cutting edge firms as they bring new technologies and products to market. I was pleased to work with Chairman Chabot in getting these measures across the finish line and into the NDAA and will continue pushing for their enactment,” said Ranking Member Nydia M. Velázquez (D-NY).

Versions of the following bills were included in the NDAA:

  • H.R. 1597, the Commercial Market Representatives Clarification Act of 2017, sponsored by Rep. David Brat (R-VA), co-sponsored by Rep. Steve Knight (R-CA) and Rep. Stephanie Murphy (D-FL)
  • H.R. 1640, the Unifying Small Business Terminology Act of 2017, sponsored by Ranking Member Nydia Velázquez (D-NY)
  • H.R. 1693, the Improving Contract Procurement for Small Businesses through More Accurate Reporting Act of 2017, sponsored by Rep. Yvette Clarke (D-NY), co-sponsored by Rep. Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA)
  • H.R. 1702, the Small Business Development Centers Improvements Act of 2017, sponsored by Rep. Dwight Evans (D-PA), co-sponsored by Rep. Aumua Amata Coleman Radewagen (R-AS) and Rep. Rod Blum (R-IA)
  • H.R. 1680, the Women’s Business Centers Improvements Act of 2017, sponsored by Rep. Steve Knight (R-CA), co-sponsored by Rep. Al Lawson (D-FL)
  • H.R. 1700, the SCORE for Small Business Act of 2017, sponsored by Rep. Alma Adams (D-NC), co-sponsored by Rep. Don Bacon (R-NE)

 

###

FY 2018 Verification and Validation Forms

Office of Advocacy - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 4:03pm

View supporting documentation for performance indicators.

 

Categories: Latest News, SBA Advocate

FY 2018 Verification and Validation Forms

Office of Advocacy - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 3:56pm

View supporting documentation for performance indicators.

 

  • Regulatory cost savings
  • Cost per $1 million in regulatory cost savings
  • Regulatory staff with RFA expertise
  • Published research and data reports
  • Outreach events by regional advocates
  • Presentations by Advocacy economists
Categories: Latest News, SBA Advocate

Thune and Markey Applaud FCC for Exploring Solutions to Unwanted Robocalls and Robotexts

U.S. Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), chairman of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation, and Sen. Ed Markey (D-Mass.), author of the Telephone Consumer Protection Act that became law in 1991, commended the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) for exploring solutions to unwanted robocalls and robotexts by creating and making available to callers a comprehensive database of reassigned telephone number

Subcommittee to Examine Progress of FirstNet Emergency Response Network

The subcommittee will examine FirstNet and AT&T’s progress to date and the anticipated timeline to build, operate, and maintain an interoperable nationwide public safety broadband network as established by the Middle Class Tax Relief And Job Creation Act of 2012.

The Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act: State of Small Business Contracting

House Small Business Committee News - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 10:00am

The Subcommittees on Contracting and Workforce and Economic Growth, Tax, and Capital Access will meet for a joint hearing titled, “The Puerto Rico Oversight, Management, and Economic Stability Act:  State of Small Business Contracting.” The hearing is scheduled to begin at 10:00 A.M. on Thursday, July 13, 2017 in Room 2360 of the Rayburn House Office Building.  

Attachments

1. Hearing Notice
2. Witness List

Witnesses

Mr. William Shear
Director
Financial Markets and Community Investment
United States Government Accountability Office
Washington, DC

Mr. Robb N. Wong
Associate Administrator
Office of Government Contracting and Business Development
United States Small Business Administration
Washington, DC 

SCOTUS Report: A Fruitful Term for Free Enterprise, the Rule of Law—and WLF

WLF Legal Pulse - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 9:55am
An economic system based on free enterprise requires an objective, clear, predictable, stable, and uniform body of rules around which commercial enterprises can organize their business affairs. For 40 years, Washington Legal Foundation (WLF) has championed fundamental free-enterprise principles in courts and regulatory agencies, as well as in the court of public opinion. Because the […]
Categories: Latest News

Ranking Member Bill Nelson Opening Statement

In 2010, Kay Bailey Hutchison and I joined together to set NASA’s human space flight program on its current “dual path” – where we are working to build private sector capabilities in Earth orbit and a government-led program for deep space and ultimately Mars.

That dual path approach is now bearing fruit. We’ve recaptured a significant portion of the global commercial launch market and we’re seeing launch prices coming down for NASA and for the Department of Defense. We are building the rocket and capsule that will take us deeper into space than we’ve ever been before. And we are seeing a dramatic transformation of the Kennedy Space Center where all of this is taking shape.

It has been my great pleasure to work with Mr. Bob Cabana, and with other leaders in government and industry, to bring this transformation about, and the exciting thing is we’re just getting started.

At Kennedy Space Center, the beating heart of Florida’s Space Coast, Bob leads one of the most dedicated and talented workforces in the country. It is a workforce that poured their hearts and souls into the Space Shuttle and Space Station.  It is a workforce that is now building new vehicles like Dragon, Starliner, and Orion, and who are transforming the Kennedy Space Center and the whole area around Cape Canaveral for the next era of civil and commercial space missions. 

One of the most visible and exciting examples of the transformation at the Cape is at Pad A, where SpaceX, under a public-private partnership, has taken responsibility for a historic launch complex that NASA was not using and could not afford to maintain.  SpaceX is using that launch complex to get supplies to the International Space Station, to launch national security missions, and to perform commercial launches that just a few years ago would have gone to Russian or European companies. Next year, they will be launching crew to the International Space Station.

Just down the beach from Pad A, United Launch Alliance will also be launching crew to ISS in Boeing’s Starliner Capsule.

And soon they’re going to have even more company.  In 2015, Bob and I worked together to help close the deal between NASA, the Air Force, Space Florida, and Blue Origin for development of Blue Origin’s new orbital launch site at the Kennedy Space Center. Today, the company is nearing the completion of its more than 630,000-square foot manufacturing facility at Kennedy Space Center's Exploration Park where Blue Origin will build its New Glenn rockets.

All of this activity is complementing ongoing work like the assembly of Orion, which was made possible by a public-private partnership with Lockheed Martin to renovate the Neil Armstrong Operations and Checkout Facility.  

So, as I said, we are just getting started, and I am going to continue to work with Bob and his counterpart at the Cape Canaveral Air Force Station, General Monteith, to ensure that we continue to improve operating conditions and capabilities for commercial users of the range, and look at ways to make the spaceport more competitive for new commercial spaceflight activities. As a matter of fact, I’m happy to report that in this year’s defense authorization, I inserted provisions to help improve the launch infrastructure at the range and to accelerate the Air Force’s adoption of reusable launch vehicles like the Falcon 9.

And, Mr. Ellis, I would add we certainly have a spot for launching your company’s rockets at the Cape as well. I’d love for Relativity Space to come be a part of the community that folks are beginning to call the Silicon Valley of the Space Business.

So, I want to thank the witnesses for coming today and thank you, Senator Cruz, for calling this hearing on this very important and timely topic. 

Chairman Chabot: Tax Reform Critical for Small Businesses

House Small Business Committee News - Thu, 07/13/2017 - 12:00am

WASHINGTON – Today, Chairman Chabot applauded the Ways and Means Committee for holding a hearing to examine how tax reform will help small businesses grow and create new jobs.

“As Chairman of the House Small Business Committee, I regularly hear from small businesses across the country about their constant struggle with trying to comply with our nation’s tax laws. They’re confusing. They’re complicated. And they’re costly,” said Chairman Chabot (R-OH).

The House Small Business Committee has made tax reform a priority, holding several hearings on the matter including how the tax code is a barrier to entrepreneurship, small business owners not being able to participate in cafeteria plans, and ensuring that the IRS effectively protects small businesses from scams.

“Our complicated tax system prevents small businesses from expanding and creating new American jobs. If we want to keep our economy strong, we must put small businesses first by reforming the tax code. Today’s hearing was another great step in the right direction. The Small Business Committee will continue to put this issue front and center,” Chairman Chabot concluded. 

###

Copyright

© 2017 Women Construction Owners & Executives USA
WCOE grows your contacts, contracts & bottom line