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Tax Conformity Update: Differences Between Bills Cause Delay

August 7, 2018

As of Tuesday, Jan. 30, both the Virginia House of Delegates and Senate have passed their own versions of tax conformity legislation (HB 154 and SB 230). However, the bills are no longer identical, which has caused an overall delay in passage.

Both bills conform with the 2017 disaster relief passed by Congress in September. There are also certain retroactive provisions of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 that are included. A key difference between the two bills is that SB 230 deconforms with the temporary reduction in the medical expense deduction floor. This difference is a major factor in the delayed passage of this year’s legislation, as neither chamber has taken up the other’s bill while the patrons are working to reconcile the language. By comparison, last year’s tax conformity legislation had passed both chambers and was awaiting the Governor’s signature by this point last year.

Based on conversations with the bill patrons, it appears that the Senate version of tax conformity is the version we can expect to proceed. However, given the remaining steps in the process, the earliest we can expect to see a conformity bill make it to the Governor’s desk is the end of next week. Once in his hands, he will have seven days to approve the bill, which means that mid-February is probably the earliest that will occur.

The VSCPA has been working hard to communicate with legislators about the urgency of moving this legislation along as quickly as possible, but we need your help. You can use our Take Action tool to send a letter to your legislators informing them of the importance of passing conformity legislation quickly. Thank you for helping us get conformity across the finish line!

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