Dec. 22, 2017 — This week, the House and Senate voted on and passed a final $1.5 trillion tax package, and President Trump signed it into law on Friday, Dec. 22, 2017.

No Democrats in either chamber voted for the bill. All present Republicans voted in support of the bill in the Senate, and only 12 House Republicans voted against the bill. Most of them were from New York, New Jersey and California districts that would be hit by new limits on deductions for state, local and property taxes. (The Hill, 12/20/17)

On Dec. 6, WEF and other water sector organizations sent a letter to Congressional leaders regarding tax reform legislation, expressing concerns over the treatment of private activity bonds (PABs) and advance refunding bonds in the House and Senate versions of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. As the letter expressed, these financing tools are very important to the local communities.

In the final legislation, the entire current category of PABs was maintained; however, the repeal of the ability to advance refund municipal bonds was maintained.

WEF and other water sector organizations were, however, relieved that the new law maintains the tax-exempt status for municipal-issued bonds for water and infrastructure projects - an early concern.

Download a copy of the full text of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act bill.

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This Week in Washington is an online news portal from the Water Environment Federation that provides updates on the latest legislative and regulatory developments that affect the water and wastewater communities. It provides concise reports of related bills, regulations, legal decisions, congressional hearings, and other federal government actions, following key issues from introduction to final determination.

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This Week in Washington is compiled by the WEF Government Affairs department. Please contact us with any questions or comments.

Claudio Ternieden
Senior Director of Government Affairs & Strategic Partnerships

Steve Dye
Legislative Director

Amy Kathman
Government Affairs Specialist