ASTA: Nothing We Were Worried About in Final Tax Bill

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As President Donald Trump’s tax bill moves closer to final passage, the American Society of Travel Agents (ASTA) reports that the potential issues it had raised with earlier versions of the bill are not in the final version.

“Basically nothing we were really worried about is in there,” Eben Peck, ASTA executive vice president of advocacy, told Travel Agent during a press call.

Peck said that many of the issues ASTA had expressed concerns about in a recent letter to Congressional leaders, such as altering the definition of independent contractors, was not present in the final version of the bill. Also absent is a proposed tax that could have impacted the cruise industry.

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“I think the pass through issue for small business owners is probably pretty generous, and that’s going to be good for our members,” Peck said. “On the whole it’s a good package.”

At the same time, Peck noted that the bill will also have a larger effect on the economy. “A lot of the stuff is way above our industry,” Peck said. “It’s about broad macroeconomic trends. Will it juice the economy? Hopefully. Will it drive up the deficit? Hopefully not.”

The Hill reports that the House of Representatives passed the final version of the tax bill Tuesday afternoon, by a vote of 227 – 203, followed shortly thereafter by the Senate. A successful challenge by Senate Democrats that certain provisions in the bill did not comply with senate budget rules has forced another House vote Wednesday. That vote is expected to pass as well, sending it to President Donald Trump for signing into law.

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