Maine Plans to Conform with Federal Tax Code

December 31, 2014

For Immediate Release: Wednesday, December 31, 2014
Contact: Adrienne Bennett, Press Secretary (207) 287-2531

Governor LePage to propose legislation adopting provisions of federal tax extenders package

AUGUSTA – Today Governor Paul R. LePage announced his intention to propose legislation which would conform Maine’s income tax law to federal tax law. The governor’s proposal is necessary following changes made by the federal Tax Increase Prevention Act.

The legislation, known more commonly as the tax extenders bill, was signed into law by President Obama on December 19, 2014. The Act retroactively extended a number of federal tax relief provisions through the end of 2014 after they initially expired on December 31, 2013.

“Once again, Congress shirked their responsibility by waiting until weeks before the new year to approve tax breaks that will only be good for 2014,” said Governor LePage. “Delaying such important decisions unnecessarily burdens American taxpayers and makes it difficult for small businesses to plan their investments and estimate their tax obligations. While I am frustrated that Congress waited so long to act, it is important to Maine’s small businesses, teachers, and homeowners that we conform to the federal tax code.”

The most notable provisions of the federal tax extenders package that impact Maine taxpayers are the above-the-line deduction of up to $250 for teacher classroom expenses, the expanded Section 179 business expense deduction, the extension of bonus depreciation and the extension of the federal research credit with its impact on the corresponding Maine research credit. In addition to these important provisions, the package also extended federal tax items impacting itemized deductions for mortgage insurance, a deduction for higher education expenses and nearly 50 other provisions.

“I urge the Maine Legislature to promptly consider my legislation when they reconvene in January. These important tax breaks and credits help employers create jobs. As Maine continues its recovery from the Great Recession, it’s important that we do all we can to assist employers investing in both business and human capital.”

Governor LePage has instructed the Maine State Tax Assessor to prepare for the adoption of his conformity legislation. Maine tax forms and instructions for 2014 that have already been issued are consistent with the governor’s decision on the 2014 tax conformity issues.