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Congresswoman Grace Meng

Representing the 6th District of New York

Meng Hails Tax Breaks That Will Provide Critical Tax Relief to Queens

Dec 19, 2015
Press Release

U.S. Rep. Grace Meng (D-Queens) today hailed the passage of critical tax breaks that will benefit individuals and small businesses in Queens.

The tax measures, passed by the House, Senate and signed into law by President Obama on Friday, will make permanent several tax breaks that Congress has traditionally only renewed on a temporary basis. 

“This package of tax breaks is a great holiday gift for residents and entrepreneurs in Queens and New York City, and I was proud to vote for it,” said Meng. “It will send critical tax relief to our region, helping not only with our wallets, but with jobs and the economy. Also, by making these tax breaks permanent, residents and small business owners in the borough will be better able to plan for the future. They will have certainty about the tax breaks for which they qualify.” 

The tax breaks that will have the biggest impact on Queens include the following:

Individuals

  • The Child Tax Credit (CTC): Helps with the cost of raising children by allowing a $1,000 tax credit per qualifying child.
  • Commuter Tax Credit: Provides relief to mass transit commuters by increasing the amount of pre-tax dollars that can be used for bus and train transportation to work. The current $130 per month limit will be raised to $255 per month, the same amount that those who drive to work can use for parking fees.
  • The American Opportunity Tax Credit (AOTC): Assists with college tuition costs by permitting a tax credit of up to $2,500 per year for tuition and expenses.
  • The Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC): Aids low and middle income individuals who work. The amount of the credit depends on the employed individual’s income, marital status and number of children.
  • Teachers’ Tax Credit: Allows teachers to deduct up to $250 for money they personally spend on classroom expenses and professional development. 

Small Businesses

  • Research and Development (R and D) Credit: Tax credit for research and development costs for start-ups and established businesses. Designed to spur innovation and research.
  • Small Business Expensing: Increases expensing limits for small businesses under section 179 of the tax code by allowing entrepreneurs to expense up to $500,000, up from $25,000, for equipment costs.
  • Landlord, Restaurant, Retailer Tax Break: Allows landlords, restaurants and retailers to recover the costs of renovations to commercial buildings over 15 years, a much quicker period of time than exists in current law. 

All of these tax breaks will be available this filing season.