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Paul R.
Republican WI 1

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  • Fighting Hunger Incentive Act of 2015

    by Representative Paul Ryan

    Posted on 2015-02-12

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    RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Speaker, pursuant to House Resolution 101, I [[Page H1002]] call up the bill (H.R. 644) to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to permanently extend and expand the charitable deduction for contributions of food inventory, and ask for its immediate consideration in the House.



    The Clerk read the title of the bill.

    The SPEAKER pro tempore. Pursuant to House Resolution 101, in lieu of the amendment in the nature of a substitute recommended by the Committee on Ways and Means printed in the bill, an amendment in the nature of a substitute consisting of the text of Rules Committee Print 114-5 is adopted, and the bill, as amended, is considered read.

    The text of the bill, as amended, is as follows: H.R. 644 Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the United States of America in Congress assembled, SECTION 1. SHORT TITLE.

    This Act may be cited as the ``America Gives More Act of 2015''.

    SEC. 2. EXTENSION AND EXPANSION OF CHARITABLE DEDUCTION FOR CONTRIBUTIONS OF FOOD INVENTORY.

    (a) Permanent Extension.--Section 170(e)(3)(C) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 is amended by striking clause (iv).

    (b) Increase in Limitation.--Section 170(e)(3)(C) of such Code, as amended by subsection (a), is amended by striking clause (ii), by redesignating clause (iii) as clause (iv), and by inserting after clause (i) the following new clauses: ``(ii) Limitation.--The aggregate amount of such contributions for any taxable year which may be taken into account under this section shall not exceed-- ``(I) in the case of any taxpayer other than a C corporation, 15 percent of the taxpayer's aggregate net income for such taxable year from all trades or businesses from which such contributions were made for such year, computed without regard to this section, and ``(II) in the case of a C corporation, 15 percent of taxable income (as defined in subsection (b)(2)(D)).

    ``(iii) Rules related to limitation.-- ``(I) Carryover.--If such aggregate amount exceeds the limitation imposed under clause (ii), such excess shall be treated (in a manner consistent with the rules of subsection (d)) as a charitable contribution described in clause (i) in each of the 5 succeeding taxable years in order of time.

    ``(II) Coordination with overall corporate limitation.--In the case of any charitable contribution allowable under clause (ii)(II), subsection (b)(2)(A) shall not apply to such contribution, but the limitation imposed by such subsection shall be reduced (but not below zero) by the aggregate amount of such contributions. For purposes of subsection (b)(2)(B), such contributions shall be treated as allowable under subsection (b)(2)(A).''.

    (c) Determination of Basis for Certain Taxpayers.--Section 170(e)(3)(C) of such Code, as amended by subsections (a) and (b), is amended by adding at the end the following new clause: ``(v) Determination of basis for certain taxpayers.--If a taxpayer-- ``(I) does not account for inventories under section 471, and ``(II) is not required to capitalize indirect costs under section 263A, the taxpayer may elect, solely for purposes of subparagraph (B), to treat the basis of any apparently wholesome food as being equal to 25 percent of the fair market value of such food.''.

    (d) Determination of Fair Market Value.--Section 170(e)(3)(C) of such Code, as amended by subsections (a), (b), and (c), is amended by adding at the end the following new clause: ``(vi) Determination of fair market value.--In the case of any such contribution of apparently wholesome food which cannot or will not be sold solely by reason of internal standards of the taxpayer, lack of market, or similar circumstances, or by reason of being produced by the taxpayer exclusively for the purposes of transferring the food to an organization described in subparagraph (A), the fair market value of such contribution shall be determined-- ``(I) without regard to such internal standards, such lack of market, such circumstances, or such exclusive purpose, and ``(II) by taking into account the price at which the same or substantially the same food items (as to both type and quality) are sold by the taxpayer at the time of the contribution (or, if not so sold at such time, in the recent past).''.

    (e) Effective Date.-- (1) In general.--Except as otherwise provided in this subsection, the amendments made by this section shall apply to contributions made after the date of the enactment of this Act, in taxable years ending after such date.

    (2) Limitation; applicability to c corporations.--The amendments made by subsection (b) shall apply to contributions made in taxable years ending after the date of the enactment of this Act.

    SEC. 3. RULE ALLOWING CERTAIN TAX-FREE DISTRIBUTIONS FROM INDIVIDUAL RETIREMENT ACCOUNTS FOR CHARITABLE PURPOSES MADE PERMANENT.

    (a) In General.--Section 408(d)(8) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 is amended by striking subparagraph (F).

    (b) Effective Date.--The amendment made by this section shall apply to distributions made in taxable years beginning after December 31, 2014.

    SEC. 4. SPECIAL RULE FOR QUALIFIED CONSERVATION CONTRIBUTIONS MADE PERMANENT.

    (a) In General.-- (1) Individuals.--Subparagraph (E) of section 170(b)(1) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 (relating to contributions of qualified conservation contributions) is amended by striking clause (vi).

    (2) Corporations.--Subparagraph (B) of section 170(b)(2) of such Code (relating to qualified conservation contributions) is amended by striking clause (iii).

    (b) Contributions of Capital Gain Real Property Made for Conservation Purposes by Native Corporations.-- (1) In general.--Section 170(b)(2) of such Code is amended by redesignating subparagraph (C) as subparagraph (D), and by inserting after subparagraph (B) the following new subparagraph: ``(C) Qualified conservation contributions by certain native corporations.-- ``(i) In general.--Any qualified conservation contribution (as defined in subsection (h)(1)) which-- ``(I) is made by a Native Corporation, and ``(II) is a contribution of property which was land conveyed under the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act, shall be allowed to the extent that the aggregate amount of such contributions does not exceed the excess of the taxpayer's taxable income over the amount of charitable contributions allowable under subparagraph (A).

    ``(ii) Carryover.--If the aggregate amount of contributions described in clause (i) exceeds the limitation of clause (i), such excess shall be treated (in a manner consistent with the rules of subsection (d)(2)) as a charitable contribution to which clause (i) applies in each of the 15 succeeding taxable years in order of time.

    ``(iii) Native corporation.--For purposes of this subparagraph, the term `Native Corporation' has the meaning given such term by section 3(m) of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act.''.

    (2) Conforming amendments.-- (A) Section 170(b)(2)(A) of such Code is amended by striking ``subparagraph (B) applies'' and inserting ``subparagraph (B) or (C) applies''.

    (B) Section 170(b)(2)(B)(ii) of such Code is amended by striking ``15 succeeding years'' and inserting ``15 succeeding taxable years''.

    (3) Valid existing rights preserved.--Nothing in this subsection (or any amendment made by this subsection) shall be construed to modify the existing property rights validly conveyed to Native Corporations (within the meaning of section 3(m) of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act) under such Act.

    (c) Effective Date.--The amendments made by this section shall apply to contributions made in taxable years beginning after December 31, 2014.

    SEC. 5. MODIFICATION OF THE TAX RATE FOR THE EXCISE TAX ON INVESTMENT INCOME OF PRIVATE FOUNDATIONS.

    (a) In General.--Section 4940(a) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 is amended by striking ``2 percent'' and inserting ``1 percent''.

    (b) Elimination of Reduced Tax Where Foundation Meets Certain Distribution Requirements.--Section 4940 of such Code is amended by striking subsection (e).

    (c) Effective Date.--The amendments made by this section shall apply to taxable years beginning after the date of the enactment of this Act.

    SEC. 6. BUDGETARY EFFECTS.

    The budgetary effects of this Act shall not be entered on either PAYGO scorecard maintained pursuant to section 4(d) of the Statutory Pay-As-You-Go Act of 2010.

    The SPEAKER pro tempore. The bill shall be debatable for 90 minutes, equally divided and controlled by the chair and ranking minority member of the Committee on Ways and Means.

    The gentleman from Wisconsin (Mr. Ryan) and the gentleman from Michigan (Mr. Levin) each will control 45 minutes.

    The Chair recognizes the gentleman from Wisconsin.

    General Leave Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Speaker, I ask unanimous consent that all Members may have 5 legislative days in which to revise and extend their remarks on H.R. 644, the Fighting Hunger Incentive Act of 2015.

    The SPEAKER pro tempore. Is there objection to the request of the gentleman from Wisconsin? There was no objection.

    Mr. RYAN of Wisconsin. Mr. Speaker, I yield myself such time as I may consume.

    Here is what we are trying to accomplish with this legislation today: we are trying to provide some more certainty.

    Small businesses, they have to be able to plan for the future. Charities who are serving those in need, they also have to plan for the future. Families need to know whether there is going to be help for them at the local food bank. A lot of them look to the Tax Code, ironically, when planning for the future. They need a tax code that is easy to understand. But that is not the Tax Code that we have today. Whether we make the Tax Code more complicated--well, if we do that, we are [[Page H1003]] making their lives more unpredictable. That is a disservice to the people we are trying to serve.

    What would really help would be to fix our broken tax system. And ultimately, our goal is to get to a tax code that is simpler, that is flatter, that is fairer for everybody. But we have still got work to do on that front, and life doesn't wait for Washington. In fact, Washington has a really bad habit of letting really important provisions expire, only to renew them retroactively. This has got to stop, and we are trying to fix this.

    So this bill would make several of these provisions permanent. Number one, it would encourage charitable giving. Number two, it would help people contribute to charities from their IRAs, Individual Retirement Accounts, tax-free. Number three, it would let people deduct food bank donations from their taxes, and it would make other changes that make giving less expensive.

    The quick to the short, Mr. Speaker, is these are provisions in the Code that we know--because it has been demonstrated--make a big difference.

    {time} 1445 It is so important that we have a vibrant civil society, that space that stands between ourselves and our government, which is where we live and we lead our lives, that it is vibrant and that that space is there to help people in need. Private charity is the glue that keeps our communities together.

    In so many instances, private charities thrive on the good will and the donations and the generosity of other people, of businesses, and those businesses are affected by the Tax Code. What we have to do is provide certainty to those businesses who want to be generous and to those people who want to be generous, but to these charities who need some predictability, so they can plan their charitable endeavors.

    Mr. Speaker, knowing that this is a bipartisan notion, knowing that the good work that is done by these groups is absolutely essential to healing people in our communities, to getting people on to lives of self-sufficiency, getting them to where they want to be in life, the least we can do is provide some certainty so more of this can happen.

    Last year, Mr. Speaker, we waited until the end of the year to extend these provisions retroactive to the first of the year but only for that year--oh, and by the way, last year, we waited until December 11 to tell all of these charities, these donors to charities, Okay. Now, here is the benefit for the past year, but guess what, it already expired the beginning of this year.

    I know that it sounds kind of complicated. The point is this is no way to run a railroad. We need to provide families with certainty. We need to provide charities with certainty. That is what this bill does.

    The part that we are going to have a debate here, Mr. Speaker, is nobody seems to have a problem when we do this 1 year at a time. Nobody seems to have a problem suggesting that we ``pay for it'' which is, in my opinion, another way of saying raise taxes on other people just to keep them the same when we do it 1 year at a time, but when we say, Let's make this thing permanent, this thing that we do once every year that everybody is fine with, instead of doing it once every year and sometimes retroactively, let's just do it permanently so people in families and businesses can plan, then all of a sudden, there is a big problem.

    I personally don't understand that. It makes no sense because who we are serving is not Washington, who we are serving are the people who are trying to survive, are the people who are the beneficiaries of these charities or the charities who are doing the good works. That is why we are bringing this legislation to the floor. I am very excited to be a part of this.

    Mr. Speaker, I want to thank all the Members on both sides of the aisle for their hard work in this area, and with that, I reserve the balance of my time.

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