Removing Barriers Blog

Senate Extenders Package a Mixed Bag
Posted July 21, 2015 by CUNA Advocacy

Today, the United States Senate Finance Committee overwhelmingly passed legislation to extend several dozen tax provisions that expired at the end of last year.  One such provision would allow for the extension of mortgage insurance premiums to be treated as qualified residence interest.  Another CUNA-supported provision would eliminate the tax faced by homeowners when renegotiating the terms of a home loan and part of the outstanding mortgage is forgiven.

However, there is a fly in the ointment.  Included was a provision inserted into the bill at the last moment to impose new mortgage reporting requirements on banks and credit unions.  This is the same provision that was included last week in the House-passed Highway and Transportation Funding Act of 2015 (H.R. 3038).  The provision, which CUNA has strongly objected to, would require additional mortgage reporting to the Internal Revenue Service.  CUNA President and CEO Jim Nussle wrote a letter last week to tax-writers on Capitol Hill, urging them not to include this provision in this or any other piece of legislation.

Today, barely two hours after the Senate Finance Committee passed the tax extenders legislation, the Senate leadership announced that they had come up with a bipartisan deal to reauthorize the Highway Trust Fund.  This cost of this legislation, like its companion bill in the House, needs to be offset by spending cuts or tax increases.  We were shocked to see that the Senate leadership used the exact same enhanced mortgage reporting requirement that the Senate Finance Committee claimed several hours earlier.

Currently, taxpayers must include the name, address and taxpayer ID number with forms submitted to the IRS.  The newly added requirements would also require the amount of outstanding principal on the mortgage at the beginning of the calendar year, the address of the property securing the mortgage and the loan origination date.

CUNA and other financial services trade associations are adamant that new and costly reporting requirements are unneeded and provide no benefits to credit union members.  CUNA will continue to lobby to ensure that this onerous new provision is not enacted into law.

For more information, please contact John Hildreth, Senior Director of Advocacy.