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Accounting News Roundup: Tax Reform’s Memory Lane; U.S., U.K. Auditor Regulators Make a Deal; Not Even Swim Club’s Funds Are Safe | 08.26.13

Lessons of 1986 Show IRS Code Revision Tougher This Time [Bloomberg]
Like today’s effort to cut rates, eliminate deductions and simplify the code, the deal under Ronald Reagan faltered again and again, Bloomberg BNA reported. Ultimately, lawmakers lowered the top rate to 28 percent from 50 percent, scrapping loopholes and increasing corporate taxes in a revenue-neutral fashion. The goal today is much the same: to rewrite the tax code to cut back on breaks and simplify the code. Lawmakers, lobbyists and tax professionals who worked on the 1986 rules say the past offers insight into the odds for another compromise. Looking back, they see several differences that lawmakers are having trouble resolving before any legislation can succeed, including items as central as whether the nation’s tax bill should go up at all. “The zero-sum game that may be part of this year’s process will make it harder than 1986,” said David Kautter, managing director of the Kogod Tax Center at American University.

FRC and PCAOB agree to joint audit supervision [Accountancy Age]
US and UK accountancy regulators the PCAOB and FRC have agreed to continue cooperating on the cross-border supervision of audit firms, after the European Commission decided to allow such agreements to run until July 2016.

U.S. agency says Michael Jackson estate owes $702 million in taxes [Reuters]
The estate of pop music legend Michael Jackson owes $702 million in federal taxes and penalties, the Internal Revenue Service charged in U.S. Tax Court, accusing the estate of undervaluing some of the star's assets by hundreds of millions of dollars. The dollar amounts in dispute had not been previously disclosed in the court challenge that the Jackson estate filed in July to a bill from the IRS, the U.S. tax-collecting agency. At issue is the wide difference between what the estate said Jackson's legacy was worth versus what the IRS determined was its taxable value.

Accountant charged with stealing from swim club [FWJG]
Dana LaMaster stole $60k from May 2009 to October 2012.

City Settles $100,000 Parking Ticket Case: 'It was a Nightmare' [DNAInfo]
The City of Chicago recently agreed to drop more than $100,000 in parking ticket fines on a car registered in Fitzgerald's name that racked up a record 678 tickets, said Law Department spokesman Roderick Drew. The agreement to reduce the final parking ticket bill to $4,470 was signed just more than a week ago. Robin Omahana, the attorney representing Fitzgerald, said his client is happy with the resolution. "She's very grateful it's all over," Omahana said. "She's pleased we got the city down to just 4 percent of their total claim." Fitzgerald rose to the top spot on Chicago's parking ticket scofflaw list after her ex-boyfriend, Brandon Preveau, abandoned a car registered in her name in an O'Hare Airport parking lot in 2009.

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