CONGRESSWOMAN ELISE STEFANIK
On Tuesday, September 16, 2014, the House will consider H.R. 3043, the Tribal General Welfare Exclusion Act of 2013, under a suspension of the rules. H.R. 3043 was introduced by Representative Devin Nunes (R-CA) on August 2, 2013 and has 58 cosponsors.
H.R. 3043 effectively codifies recent Internal Revenue Service (IRS) guidance regarding the tax treatment of certain “general welfare” benefits provided by Indian tribes. Under current law, certain payments from governmental funds for the promotion of general welfare are excluded from income for Federal tax purposes. Prior to the issuance of recent IRS guidance, there was some uncertainty regarding the applicability of this tax exclusion to similar payments made by Indian tribes to their members. H.R. 3043 would: (1) generally codify into the recent IRS guidance, ensuring that particular benefits provided by Indian tribes to their members qualify for the general welfare exclusion; (2) establish a Tribal Advisory Committee to advise on tribal-related taxation issues; and (3) set out certain administrative tax rules, including suspension of audits and examinations of Indian tribal governments and members of Indian tribes and waive any interest or tax penalties related to the exclusion from gross income of Indian general welfare benefits.
Earlier this summer, the IRS issued final guidance regarding the general welfare exclusion applicable to Indian Tribal programs that provide benefits to tribal members. Under the Internal Revenue Code (IRC), members of a tribe must include the value of certain governmental benefits in their gross income. The final guidance sets out the circumstances in which the general welfare exclusion is applicable and the safe harbors for applying the exclusion. H.R. 3043 codifies this guidance.
The Joint Committee on Taxation reports that H.R. 3043 would have a negligible effect on federal fiscal revenues.
For questions or further information contact the GOP Conference at 5-5107.