House repeals death tax, passes appropriations bill

Published 3:02 am Monday, June 26, 2006

By By a vote of 269-156, the House of Representatives last week approved H.R. 5638, the Permanent Estate Tax Relief Act of 2006, which will provide permanent estate tax and gift tax relief for millions of Americans.
As it stands now, an elimination of the federal estate tax - also known as the &#8220death tax” - has been gradually phased in during the past few years and is due to be completely repealed Jan. 1, 2010.
Unfortunately, the repeal is scheduled to be eliminated in Dec. 31, 2010, and millions of Americans will once again be forced to pay tax on inheritance they may receive from their parents or other loved ones unless this legislation becomes law.
On April 13, 2005, the House passed H.R. 8, which would permanently repeal the estate tax starting in 2010; however, the Senate has not been able to achieve the 60 votes required to invoke cloture to consider the legislation.
Now that H.R. 5638 has passed the House, the Senate is scheduled to debate this alternative legislation this week.
I have long felt the death tax is inherently unfair.
Under the current system, an American worker who is attempting to provide an inheritance to leave for their family must pay taxes on their income and on any property they own.
Following their death, their beneficiaries must in turn pay taxes on what they receive.
In some cases, taxes are sometimes paid two, three, or even four times on the same money and property as they are passed from one generation to the next.
It is simply unconscionable that the federal government levies a tax upon the passing of a loved one