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In addition, the TCJA establishes a territorial system of taxation for certain offshore business profits of domestic businesses, mandates taxation of offshore earnings at a reduced tax rate, introduces an entirely new concept of a reduced tax burden on pass-through business income, limits business interest deductions, and makes major changes to the individual tax structure, including a substantially increased standard deduction and major limitations on state and local tax deductions.

During the final processes leading to the signature of the bill by the president, U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski and U.S. Senators Joe Donnelly and Todd Young released the following press stories for their Indiana constituents:

 

Walorski issues statement on President signing Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

Historic tax reform law will cut taxes for Americans at all income levels, boost economic growth and job creation

WASHINGTON – U.S. Rep. Jackie Walorski (R-Ind.) released the following statement after President Trump signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act into law:

“President Trump has signed the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act into law, which means hardworking Hoosiers at all income levels will be getting a tax cut. Middle-income Americans will be able to keep more of the money they earn, and businesses will be able to grow, invest, hire more workers, and raise wages. This law fulfills our promise to deliver a fair and simple tax code that puts working families first and gives them a better shot at the American Dream.”

Background

The House and Senate earlier this week passed the Conference Report to Accompany H.R. 1, the final version of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act. It passed the House with Walorski’s support by a vote of 227 to 203. Video of Walorski speaking on the House floor in support of this historic tax reform bill is available here.

Bigger Paychecks

American taxpayers send too much of their hard-earned money to Washington, making it harder for middle-income families to thrive. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act means bigger paychecks for hardworking families, more money in their pockets, and more flexibility in how they use it.

  • Lowers income tax rates for Americans at all income levels, with rates of 0, 10, 12, 22, 24, 32, 35, and 37 percent.
  • Roughly doubles the amount of income excluded from taxes, with the standard deduction increasing to $24,000 for married couples and $12,000 for individuals.
  • Supports families by expanding the Child Tax Credit from $1,000 to $2,000 and preserving the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit and the Adoption Tax Credit.
  • Makes no changes to critical retirement savings options like 401(k)s and Individual Retirement Accounts.
  • Maintains important education benefits like student-loan interest deductions and expands 529 accounts so families can save for elementary, secondary, and undergraduate education.

Fairer Taxes

The tax code is overly complicated and full of special interest carve-outs and loopholes. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act eliminates special interest tax breaks and makes the tax code simpler so people can spend less time filing their taxes.

  • Simplifies the tax code so most individuals and families can file their taxes as easily as filling out a postcard.
  • Eliminates special-interest loopholes while maintaining important middle-class tax incentives.
  • Continues important tax deductions for middle-income Americans, including for charitable contributions, home mortgage interest, medical expenses, and state and local taxes up to $10,000.
  • Eliminates Obamacare’s individual mandate penalty so no one is forced to buy a health insurance plan they don’t want.
  • Protects family farms and small businesses from the Death Tax by doubling the amount of the current exemption.

More Jobs

Our outdated tax code makes it harder for businesses to create jobs and compete in the 21st century economy. The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act will help businesses grow, invest, and hire more workers, and it will keep America competitive in the global economy.

  • Lowers taxes on small businesses by offering a 20 percent deduction on business income earned by S corporations, partnerships, LLCs, and sole proprietorships.
  • Ensures tax relief is targeted to Main Street job creators by establishing strong safeguards.
  • Helps businesses invest and expand by allowing full and immediate expensing of new equipment and by preserving the ability of small businesses to write off interest on loans.
  • Lowers the corporate tax rate from 35 to 21 percent, below the average among industrialized nations.
  • Levels the playing field for American workers by ending incentives to send American jobs, manufacturing, and profits overseas.
  • Supports “Made in America” innovation by maintaining the Research and Development Tax Credit.

For more information about tax reform, visit walorski.house.gov/taxreform.

Walorski represents the 2nd Congressional District of Indiana, serving as a member of the House Ways and Means Committee.

 

Donnelly: Bill hikes taxes on many middle class families, fails to address outsourcing of American jobs

Senator agreed with President’s stated goals, however McConnell's, Ryan’s tax hike does not reflect those priorities

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Joe Donnelly spoke on the Senate floor expressing his disappointment and explaining why he will oppose the tax hike legislation put forward by Senator Mitch McConnell and Speaker Paul Ryan.

From the beginning, Donnelly has shown his willingness to work with the president on tax reform.  Over the last several months, Donnelly traveled with the President to Indiana on Air Force One, attended Vice President Pence’s speech in Anderson, and participated in multiple meetings with the White House.

Donnelly agreed with the president’s goals of reforming the tax code in a way that overwhelmingly supports the middle class and prevents the outsourcing of American jobs. The McConnell/Ryan bill, however, does not reflect these priorities and instead would result in a tax hike for many Hoosier middle class families and fails to crack down on corporations that outsource jobs to foreign countries.

Donnelly said, in part, in his speech, “The reasons I oppose this bill are plain and simple, clear and commonsense: Instead of providing a tax cut that overwhelmingly benefits the middle class, this bill cuts taxes for the wealthiest Americans while raising taxes on a majority of families making less than $75,000 in the coming years. Instead of closing tax loopholes like the shameful one that allows Wall Street hedge fund managers to pay a lower tax rate than a Hoosier firefighter, than a Hoosier teacher, than a Hoosier policeman, or a Hoosier steelworker…This bill preserves these giveaways…”

“And instead of protecting American jobs by adopting provisions from my End Outsourcing Act, an effort that President Trump has told me on numerous occasions that he is all in on and he supports, instead this tax hike bill does zero to claw back tax breaks and incentives awarded to corporations that later decide to outsource American jobs.”

 

Young: Historic tax reform bill benefits middle-class Hoosier families and small businesses

WASHINGTON D.C.– U.S. Senator Todd Young (R-Ind.) released a video statement following the Senate’s passage of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act

Here is a transcript of Young's statement:

"Today, I voted for pro-growth tax reform that will provide needed relief to American families.

"This bill is going to create a tax code that is simpler, fairer, and that allows Hoosiers to keep more of their hard-earned money.

"The bill also repeals the harmful Obamacare individual mandate tax, allowing families to choose the healthcare that’s right for them.  In our state of Indiana, nearly 140-thousand Hoosiers of modest means chose to pay that Obamacare individual mandate tax instead of buying insurance they don’t want or they can’t afford. Eighty-one percent of those who paid the tax made less than $50,000 per year, and 40 percent made less than $25,000. By passing this tax reform legislation, and repealing the Obamacare individual mandate tax, we’re getting rid of a major burden on Hoosier families.

"Throughout this process, I listened carefully to feedback from people across the state of Indiana. I’m glad to say that this bill continues and expands support for a number of Hoosier priorities. Including:  

  • Deductions for contributions to benefit our charitable organizations.
  • Keeping tuition waivers for graduate students untaxed, so that Hoosiers are equipped to thrive in this ever-changing economy.
  • Maintaining the Earned Income Tax Credit so that work pays more than joblessness.
  • Expanding the Child Tax Credit for families trying to make ends meet.
  • And protecting the Adoption Tax Credit so that caring adults can become loving parents.

"When paired with regulatory reform, this tax bill is going to give a major boost to our economy, creating an environment that’s ripe for jobs and small business growth.

"I’m glad we are able to deliver this big win for the American people before the end of the year. And I look forward to continuing advancing Hoosier priorities in 2018."

 
 
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Local News Briefs

Candidate filing underway for 2018 Indiana Primary

Updated

Candidate filing for the 2018 Indiana Primary Election opened Jan. 10 and will run until 12 noon, Friday, Feb. 9.

Pulaski County offices up for election will be circuit court judge, superior court judge, prosecutor, clerk of the circuit court, sheriff, assessor, coroner, surveyor, county commissioner District 3, and county council Districts 1-4.

 
PACE to offer $55,000 in educational grants

Pulaski Alliance for Community Education (PACE) is offering $55,000 in educational grants to eligible organizations this spring.

PACE was established in 2002 as the result of a Lilly Endowment CAPE grant won by the Community Foundation of Pulaski County. The purpose of CAPE was to provide selected counties with the ability to expand educational opportunities.

 
Extension to offer 'Strengthening Families Program'

Purdue Extension will offer the "Strengthening Families Program: For Parents and Youth 10-14" locally in February and March. 

Parents want to protect their children, but it’s challenging. Youth need skills to help them resist the peer pressure that leads to risky behaviors. Research shows that protective parenting improves family relationships and decreases the level of family conflict, contributing to lower levels of substance use.

 
Cold or Flu?

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control announced Friday (Jan.12) that influenza cases are widespread across the country, with Indiana among the states hardest hit.

"Flu is everywhere in the US right now," said Dr. Dan Jernigan, director of the CDC's influenza branch. "This is the first year we've had the entire continental US at the same level (of flu activity) at the same time." It has been an early flu season that seems to be peaking now, he said, with a 5.8% increase in laboratory-confirmed cases this week over last.

 
Scholarships available through Community Foundation of Pulaski County

Scholarship applications for 2018 high school graduates will be available online through the Community Foundation of Pulaski County starting Friday, Jan. 12.

Applications are found on the Community Foundation’s website at www.cfopc.org.

 
Next Historical Society 'Music Jam' Jan. 19

A "Country Music, Bluegrass and Gospel Music Jam," sponsored by the Pulaski County Historical Society, will run from 7 to 10 p.m., Friday, Jan. 19, at the Eagles community room, SR 14 W, Winamac.

All musicians are welcome (acoustic instruments only, please). The event is open to the public.

 
NIPFP 26th annual Toy Show Jan. 21

The 26th annual Farm Toy Show will run from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 21, at Eastern Pulaski Elementary School in Winamac.

The event, sponsored by the Northern Indiana Power From the Past, Inc., usually attracts over 2,000 visitors.

 
4-H Open House & STEM Night Jan. 25

The annual Pulaski County 4-H Open House and STEM Night will begin at 6 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 25, at the county highway garage on U.S. 35, north of Winamac.

This is an opportunity for new 4-H'ers to meet with different project leaders to see which projects they are interested in completing for the 2018 4-H year.

 
PCPL lists January events

Pulaski County Public Library has listed its special programs and activities for January. They include making an artsy picture frame, an "arm knitting" class, a make-and-take craft, and a computer class on PowerPoint.

For more information on any program, call the library at 574-946- 3432.

 
Red Cross to accept blood donations Jan. 12, 31

FORT WAYNE - This January, National Blood Donor Month, the American Red Cross has an urgent need for blood donors of all blood types to make an appointment to give now and help address a winter blood donation shortage.

The next opportunities in Pulaski County to donate blood to the American Red Cross will be Friday, Jan. 12 and Wednesday Jan. 31, both in Winamac.

 
PMH Senior Care helps senior citizens with mental health issues

Pulaski Memorial Hospital's new Senior Care program can help senior citizens with mental health issues, including anxiety, depression, fear and worry lasting more than two weeks. It also assists with grief issues.

Program director Mindy Shidler, RN, hopes to spread information about the Senior Care program throughout the community.

 
 

Indiana News

Health officials report increased flu activity, deaths

INDIANAPOLIS—The Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH) is urging residents to take precautions against influenza amid recent increases in flu-like illnesses and deaths.

As of Dec. 30, 25 flu-related deaths occurred in Indiana during 2017.

 
Delphi double homicide investigation continues

INDIANAPOLIS - Monday morning (Jan.15) members of the Liberty German family and Indiana State Police Superintendent Doug Carter appeared on a live segment of the Megyn Kelly TODAY show to help keep the double homicide of Liberty German and Abigail Williams in the public eye. Late last year there was a similar appearance on the Dr. PHIL show.

The one-year anniversary of the teen girls' deaths near Delphi approaches next month.

 
Holcomb’s second State of the State address emphasizes workforce, presents goals for progress in 2018

INDIANAPOLIS – Indiana Governor Eric J. Holcomb delivered his 2018 State of the State address to a joint convention of the Indiana General Assembly Tuesday (Jan. 9).

While continuing his focus on five key pillars, the governor’s remarks highlighted his commitment to developing a skilled, ready workforce and detailed several milestones he expects the state to meet.

 
Scammers targeting NIPSCO customers throughout Indiana

Company offers tips to avoid being a victim

MERRILLVILLE - NIPSCO has received an influx in calls from residential and business customers reporting several hundred cases of unknown callers claiming to be affiliated with the company and demanding payment through a prepaid card.

Some reports have indicated that scammers have appeared in person knocking on doors, while other reports have indicated that the company’s 1-800 customer service phone number was cloned to appear on caller IDs.

 
Fountain County contestant wins 2018 Indiana State Fair Queen title

INDIANAPOLIS - Fountain County's Audrey Campbell was crowned as the 60th Indiana State Fair Queen at the pageant finals Sunday afternoon at the state fairgrounds.

She will reign over the 2018 Indiana State Fair Aug. 3-19, in Indianapolis.

 
Indiana General Assembly 'short' session opens Jan. 3

The Indiana General Assembly 120th session will reconvene for the 2018 "short" session at 1:30 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 3, at the statehouse in Indianapolis.

The short session will not involve drafting a state budget. The deadline for bill filing for the Senate is Jan. 5, and for the House is Jan. 9. The 2018 session must end no later than March 14.

 
Pulaski County's unemployment rate dips to 3.3% in November

Pulaski County's unemployment rate dipped 3.3 percent in November, down from 3.5 percent in October, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development reported Wednesday (Dec. 27). The rate was 4.1 percent a year ago.

The county has 5,891 employed persons in a labor force of 6,092. Last month those numbers were 5,822 of 6,033. A year ago the numbers were 5,989 of 6,247.

 
Donnelly, Young bill to support Law Enforcement Mental Health Programs heads to President

Bipartisan bill would help law enforcement agencies establish or enhance mental health care services for officers

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The bipartisan Law Enforcement Mental Health and Wellness Act, originally introduced by U.S. Senators Joe Donnelly (D-IN) and Todd Young (R-IN), is headed to President Trump to be signed into law.  

Donnelly and Young introduced the bill in the Senate in early April and it passed unanimously in May. U.S. Representatives Susan Brooks (IN-05) and Val Demings (FL-10) introduced the companion bill in the House of Representatives in late April and it passed the House in November and cleared the Senate last night.

 
Walorski, Donnelly, Young issue statements on tax reform bill

PresidentTrump signed into law Dec. 22 the $1.5 trillion Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) which makes widespread changes to the Internal Revenue Code.

The legislation is the first major overhaul of the U.S. tax code in more than 30 years. Almost all of its provisions, including a lower corporate tax rate of 21% and lower individual income tax rates, go into effect Jan. 1.

 
U.S. Census Bureau releases Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates for counties

WASHINGTON, D.C.– In 2016, the median household income for all counties in the U.S. ranged between $22,045 and $134,609, with a median county-level value of $47,589, according to the new Small Area Income and Poverty Estimates report released last month by the U.S. Census Bureau.

The median household income in 2016 for Pulaski County was $47,243, according to the report. The county has and estimated 381 children, ages 5-17 (school-aged), living in families in poverty. In total, the county has an estimated 534 children, ages 0-17 (19.4 percent in that age population), living in families in poverty.

 
 

Post News

Daughters of the American Revolution names award recipients

The Metamonong Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) has recognized two local high school seniors as the recipients of this year’s Good Citizens Award.

Jerod Glasford of West Central High School and Emma Eldridge of Winamac Community High School were selected by teachers and peers for this award based on their leadership, service, and patriotism.

 
West Central Board votes approval of $3.8 million secure entrance, utilization of space project

FRANCESVILLE - The West Central School Board voted to approve the $3.8 million "secure entrance and utilization of space" project at its January meeting.

The purpose of the project is to provide safer entrances into the buildings and to utilize the current building space into a more improved educational environment. The board noted that as existing obligations mature, the anticipated net impact on the Debt Service Fund tax rate will be $0.

 
EPCS Board holds annual reorganization, discusses asphalt projects

WINAMAC - The Eastern Pulaski Community School Board held its reorganizational meeting Monday (Jan. 8), and also agreed to move forward with the process of selecting some asphalt/concreted projects needed on the school campus.

The board elected Terri Johnston as its president, Deke DeMarco as vice president, and Beth Ruff as secretary.

 
County law enforcement officers to participate in traing for 'Policing the Teen Brain'

Law enforcement officers and juvenile probation officers from Pulaski County will gather together to improve interactions with youth through the Policing the Teen Brain training Jan. 16-19 in Plymouth.

“We look to this unique training as a step toward enhancing our work with youth, and as part of the juvenile detention alternatives initiative (JDAI),” said Natalie Daily-Federer, PhD, JDAI coordinator. “Through it, we hope to offer officers new skills in interacting with youth and to strengthen Pulaski’s law -enforcement relationships with youth-serving community organizations.”

 
WOW! announces Holiday Window Decorating Contest winners

WINAMAC - WOW! (Wander Our Winamac) has announced that Opera House Floral & Gifts is the winner of its first annual Holiday Window Decorating Contest.

WOW! invited downtown Winamac businesses to festively decorate and light their display windows for the holiday season (Dec. 1-31). 148 voters participated in the public online voting to determine the contest winners.

 
Shane Pilarski among 2017 Outstanding Women in Banking

FRANCESVILLE - Selected from nominations submitted by readers, NorthWestern Financial Review honors five outstanding women bankers who have made significant contributions to their communities and the industry. The awards are sponsored by CliftonLarsonAllen.

This year's selections include Alliance Bank’s president/CEO, Shane Pilarski.

 
EPCS approves 2018-19 school calendar

WINAMAC - The Eastern Pulaski Community Schools Board approved the 2018-19 school calendar as presented at its monthly meeting Monday evening (Dec. 11).

Before the board vote, Superintendent Dan Foster noted there is current discussion concerning legislation to start school later in August.

 
Peyton Newman named recipient of 2018 Lilly Scholarship

One Pulaski County student has been named the recipient of a full-tuition, four-year scholarship as the Community Foundation of Pulaski County 2018 Lilly Endowment Community Scholar.

Peyton Newman will receive full tuition to an Indiana college of her choice and a $900 yearly stipend for required books and equipment.

 
West Central Board continues work on safe school entrance projects

FRANCESVILLE - The West Central School Board advanced plans for its "school entrance security" projects, heard praise for the high school's dual credit program, and accepted bids for two new school buses at its December meeting.

Also, Superintendent Don Street reported that the Indiana Department of Education has notified school districts that the tuition support monthly payments will be decreased because the Indiana State Budget for education is less than the total tuition support payments.

 
Community Foundation renews commitment to pool project agreements

In a letter to the community, the Community Foundation of Pulaski County has renewed its commitment to the Winamac Community Pool Project agreements.

The Community Foundation voted last year to enter into two fund agreement contracts relating to the pool project.

 
One dead, another injured in Medaryville incident

MEDARYVILLE - One man is dead and another injured as the result of an apparent stabbing and shooting incident at a Medaryville residence Tuesday afternoon (Nov. 21).

The Pulaski County Coroner's Office identified the dead man as Kenneth Ray Henry, 41, of Rensselaer. The name of the injured man has not been released.