Upcoming National Meeting

51st Annual Meeting Webinar

This program offers sessions of interest to every state tax professional in industry, whether a COST member or otherwise, as well as in the consulting, accounting and legal profession. The program covers all types of state and local taxes that business taxpayers are confronted with today and provides updates on key SALT issues.

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Newsletters & Media

Cost Conscious

ISSUE 20-16; August 7, 2020

Delays in the Audits and Appeals Resolution Process – As much as businesses have had to shift work arrangements in response to the pandemic (see previous question, below), state taxing agencies have also made similar adjustments. The collective impact results in more remote state tax audits and appeals, which may also impact the timeframe to resolve a matter. Generally, has it taken your company l


Bloomberg TAX

For Uber, the ‘Stall Game’ Averts a Reckoning Over Driver Pay


Uber Technologies Inc. Chief Executive Officer Dara Khosrowshahi’s warning that the company may have to temporarily shut down in California is textbook strategy for the ride-hailing giant: When adverse court rulings hit, appeal to the public for support and seek to delay regulatory action.

When Billable Hours Are Scarce, Partners Get to Work First


Welcome back to the Big Law Business column on the changing legal marketplace written by me, Roy Strom. This week, we look at why partners rush in to bill time when the economy takes a hit. Sign up to receive this column in your inbox on Thursday mornings.

American Cities Brace for a Future With Even Greater Inequality


The virus and the economic slump are likely to worsen inequality, leaving the rich largely unscathed while crushing the poor and working classes of America’s big and midsize cities. That’s despite the efforts of Black Lives Matter and other movements that are devoted to fighting a winner-take-all urban economic system.

Finding Workplace Order in Increasingly Chaotic Times


There is no doubt that a longer-than-normal tax season took its toll on tax professionals. But those that thought that the work would slow after July quickly learned different.

States Target Missed Tax Collections From Intercompany Transfers


A dozen states are moving more aggressively against corporate tax avoidance schemes, with strategies to recapture billions of dollars into their tax bases lost through intercompany transfers.

INSIGHT: Opportunity Zone Houses Require Substantial Improvement


The IRS concludes that a personal-use house located in a qualified opportunity zone, to be renovated by its buyer into a store, restaurant, or professional office,will require substantial improvement by the buyer in order to constitute qualified opportunity zone business property, writes Alan Lederman of Gunster, Yoakley & Stewart, P.A.

INSIGHT: Conducting Effective Workplace Investigations Without the Workplace


Remote workplace investigations, once thought to be temporary, may be with us for the long haul, due to Covid-19. Attorneys with the Law Offices of Amy Oppenheimer offer tips for better online communication, working with remote technology, and creating rapport with witnesses without in-person eye contact, reading body language, and handling documents.

Trump, Pelosi Make Opposing Economic Bets in Stimulus Standoff


Nancy Pelosi and Donald Trump are putting down opposing wagers on where the economy is headed and who voters will blame if it goes south.

Pelosi Rebuffs Mnuchin ‘Overture’ With Relief Talks in Limbo


House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said she rebuffed an “overture” from Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin to restart talks on a new round of U.S. pandemic relief because the White House hadn’t budged from demands for a smaller stimulus.

New York’s Local Sales-Tax Collections Improve in July: DiNapoli


Local sales-tax collections in New York State fell 8.2% in July, an improvement from the 25.4% drop in June, according to a news release from state Comptroller Thomas DiNapoli.

Tax Notes

Wisconsin Court Orders Dismissal of Taxpayers’ Claims Against DOR


A Wisconsin appellate court has directed a lower court to dismiss claims against the state Department of Revenue in a case concerning a town’s taxation policy related to Native American property.

Virginia Mayor Urges Lawmakers to Legalize, Tax Marijuana


The mayor of Richmond, Virginia, has called on Gov. Ralph Northam (D) and legislative leaders to legalize marijuana and establish an excise tax system for its recreational use.

Audit Finds South Carolina County Misused $32.4 Million


A South Carolina county misused millions of dollars meant for transportation projects on legal expenses, public relations, a job training program, and other costs, according to an audit by the state revenue department.

Michigan Lawmakers Propose Gender-Neutral Language in Tax Laws


Legislation has been introduced in Michigan to replace gender-specific language in references to married couples in the state’s tax laws.

Oregon Special Session Won't Include CARES Act Decoupling


Oregon lawmakers appear to have decided not to take up a proposal to decouple from federal business tax breaks in the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act.

Report: Vermont Pot Revenue Potential Higher Than Estimated


A new report estimates that Vermont residents' heavy cannabis use would generate over $175 million in cannabis tax revenue under legislation to legalize sales of the drug.

Oregon May Consider Decoupling From CARES Act in Special Session


Oregon lawmakers discussed a proposal to decouple from business tax break provisions of the CARES Act in advance of the special session that begins August 10.

California Court Rejects Group's Bid to Alter Split-Roll Ballot Title


A California tax watchdog is appealing a superior court ruling that rejected its challenge to the ballot description of a measure to increase commercial property taxes.

COVID-19 Surcharges Are Taxable in South Carolina


Charges added to the price of items sold by retailers to cover increased costs associated with the COVID-19 pandemic are subject to sales tax in South Carolina, according to guidance issued by the state Department of Revenue.

Maine GOP Avoids Special Session Vote, Leaving IRC Conformity in Limbo


Maine GOP lawmakers have for the second time avoided voting on convening a special session, leaving IRC conformity and tribal sovereignty legislation in limbo.

Featured Resources

COST - Council on State Taxation

Amicus Briefs

Sirius XM Radio v. Hegar (Texas)

COST and TTARA amicus brief urging Texas Supreme Court to accept review of the Court of Appeals’ decision to ensure uniformity and to provide clear rules as to how to apportion receipts derived from the performance of services.

COST - Council on State Taxation

COST Studies, Articles & Reports

2020 State and Local Amnesty Programs

Tracker of most state and local tax amnesty programs enacted and conducted in 2020.

COST - Council on State Taxation

COST Comments & Testimony

Comments to FTB re. De Minimis Partner Reporting and Payment Requirements

COST encourages the FTB to adopt reporting procedures for de minimis adjustments pursuant to its authority under Cal. Rev. & Tax Cd. § 18622.5(j).