FRESNO, CA – As a Farm Bureau Federation member, Datatech follows the many pressing issues challenging our agribusiness clients. One of those issues is the ground swell in ag circles for federal tax reform.
A recent nationwide study from Morning Consult shows American voters support tax reform by a wide margin as well as tax changes that would benefit America’s farm and ranch families.
Looking at the data, over half of voters polled also expressed support for tax reform that would cover these specific areas:
- Allowing farmers to deduct machinery purchases in the year those purchases are made;
- Allowing farmers and ranchers to average their income;
- Decreasing capital gains taxes; and
- Repealing the estate tax.
Commenting in the American Farm Bureau News, AFBF President Zippy Duvall says, “Americans are ready for tax reform, and many know the toll that taxes take on our farm and ranch families. Congress must take action to provide tax relief, and farmers and ranchers will be sharing that message with their lawmakers until this job gets done.”
According to the study, 63 percent of voters say federal income tax rates are too high. 72 percent of voters support lower federal income tax rates for farmers, a matter says the AFBF, is supported strongly across party lines. There was even greater support for lower federal income tax rates for individuals, small businesses and family owned businesses.
Respondents to the survey believe, by a 3 to 1 margin that the current tax system in America is unfair to farmers. And by a two thirds margin, respondents say that farmers and ranchers should be extended special tax treatment due to the combination of challenges and risks that are specific to agriculture. The AFBF says that sentiment was shared across party lines.
AFBF reported that the poll also included the following findings concerning specific tax provisions:
- A strong majority (73 percent) supports the ability of small businesses to write off business-related expenses.
- Voters overwhelmingly support (81-7 percent) allowing small businesses to deduct equipment purchases in the year the purchase is made.
- Voters support reducing the capital gains tax (54- 26 percent).
- Three in five voters (61-18 percent) say farmland that is sold to a member of the next generation should be exempt from capital gains taxes.
- Three in five voters (60-23 percent) say farmers or small businesses should not pay taxes on equipment sales if money goes toward replacement.
- By a 17-point margin, voters say farmers should not pay taxes when they sell farmland and use the money to buy different farmland.
- A strong majority (64 percent) supports repealing the estate tax.
- Three in four voters (74 percent) support allowing farmers to deduct interest paid on business loans.
- Three in five voters (58-19 percent) said farmers and ranchers should be allowed to average their incomes for tax purposes due to wide variations in annual income.
Morning Consult conducted the online survey of 1,996 registered voters in late July for the AFBF. Margin of error of is +/- 2%.