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General Assembly Tackles Fixed-Date and Rolling Conformity

January 27, 2020

The rapid nature of Virginia’s legislative session can leave even an elected official confused. We have asked — and will continue to ask — VSCPA members to take action on a number of different bills that impact the profession and all Virginians. Some of the bills may seem identical or even contradictory, so here is a quick primer on the various conformity bills being considered by the Virginia General Assembly:  

Fixed-Date Conformity

H.B. 1413 and S.B. 582 are emergency bills that must be passed for Virginia to conform to the U.S. Internal Revenue Code (IRC) for the 2019 tax year. These bills are now passed out of the appropriate committees in both chambers. We hope they continue to move toward becoming law and still need your help advocating for their passage. The emergency clause is necessary for the legislation to go into immediate effect for this tax season. Both bills deconform with the lowered floor for the medical expense deduction extension, which is not ideal. VSCPA Vice President of Advocacy Emily Walker testified in both committee hearings to point out potential problems with deconforming to legislators. However, the fiscal impact of conforming is more than the General Assembly is prepared to address. 

Rolling Tax Conformity

At the same time, the VSCPA is working on a longer-term push for adopting rolling conformity, as laid out in our white paper “Rolling Tax Conformity: A Better Option for Virginia.” We worked with House Finance Chair Del. Vivian Watts to draft H.B. 734 calling for rolling conformity in Virginia, which would automatically adopt most amendments to the IRC to greatly reduce the need for multiple or emergency measures in the future. This bill was passed out of a House Finance Subcommittee on Monday, Jan. 27, and now goes to the full Finance Committee. This is the time to contact your elected officials on HB 734 and implore them to SUPPORT the bill.  

We understand this is complex and fast moving. That is exactly why we need our members to help us in advocating for these measures. If you have any questions, please reach out to our advocacy team at any time by contacting VSCPA Public Affairs Director Tim Barry