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The new Inflation Reduction Act will benefit consumers in many ways

Us-capitol-building-g6133ebf00_640It seems like a miracle. The Democrats finally came together and passed major legislation to benefit American consumers. It’s called the Inflation Reduction Act.

U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.) said the law will have a lasting impact on the planet and will help lower costs for Americans across our country.

Here are some of the main provisions of the act:

Tax reforms and revenue

  • 15 percent corporate minimum tax: America’s largest corporations will pay at least 15 percent of their profits in federal taxes. It will raise more than $200 billion.
  • IRS tax enforcement: The act includes $80 billion in IRS funding for high-income and corporate tax enforcement, as well as IT modernization that will help with both tax enforcement and taxpayer services.  
  • Free e-file: The act establishes an IRS task force to look into developing and running an IRS-run free direct e-file tax return system. The funding for IRS IT modernization will also enable the IRS to develop further simplified tax filing tools.

Climate

  • The act includes $1 billion for states, municipalities, tribes, and nonprofit school transportation associations to use for clean heavy-duty vehicles, such as school and transit buses and garbage trucks. This funding is in addition to more than $10 billion for transitioning school and transit buses to low- or zero-emission vehicles that was provided in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act.
  • The act includes more than $9 billion for federal procurement of American-made clean technologies to create a stable market for clean products, including $3 billion for the U.S. Postal Service to purchase zero-emission vehicles.
  • The act includes $27 billion for the greenhouse gas reduction fund, a clean energy technology accelerator to support deployment of technologies to reduce emissions, especially in disadvantaged communities.
  • The act includes $2 billion for National laboratory infrastructure to accelerate breakthrough energy research.

Health care

  • The act authorizes Medicare to negotiate the price of some prescription drugs for the first time.
  • The act will extend supports to help millions of Americans afford their health insurance.

The measure was passed without any Republican support.

 “This is a very good day for America,” Robert Weissman, president of Public Citizen, a consumer advocacy group, said in a statement about the new law.

But he asked, “As Republicans again vote in lockstep against this package, they should be forced to answer the question: Why? Why did you vote against drug price relief for seniors? Why did you vote against making large companies pay at least some of their taxes? Why did you vote against health care affordability? Why did you vote against incentives – no regulations, just incentive – to spur renewable energy?”

Good questions. It’s disappointing, once again, that the Republicans are into obstructionism instead of helping to make the government work as well as possible.

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