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Congress Passes Vital Small Business Tax Relief Championed by ICBA

Washington, D.C. (Oct. 11, 2004) - The Independent Community Bankers of America (ICBA), the nation's largest banking trade association, praised Congress for passing Subchapter S reform legislation today that ICBA has long championed for millions of small businesses, including many community banks.

After negotiating various last-minute tax and appropriation measures over the weekend, Congress cleared the American Jobs Creation Act of 2004, which includes Subchapter S corporation reforms ICBA has promoted for more than five years.

Included in the final bill passed today were specific ICBA recommendations in the association's most recent comprehensive tax policy study, entitled "Community Bank Tax Relief and Simplification Options." (View the study)

“ICBA is proud to be part of this tremendous victory for America’s small businesses,” stated Camden R. Fine, ICBA’s president and CEO. “This bill will help more than three million existing Subchapter S small businesses by allowing them to avoid unnecessarily punitive and onerous tax rules and regulations.  This measure will empower small businesses to go on fueling the nation’s economy and job growth.”

Key Subchapter S reforms in the legislation include:

  • Increasing the number of Subchapter S corporation eligible shareholders to 100 from 75;
  • Counting family members as only one shareholder;
  • Permitting S corporation shares to be held in Individual Retirement Accounts; and
  • Easing restrictive passive-income and bank-director share rules.

The legislation is also good news for 2,300 existing Subchapter S corporation banks and 1,400 additional community banks considering electing S corporation status.

ICBA extended special appreciation to House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Bill Thomas (R-Calif.) and Senate Finance Committee Chairman Charles Grassley (R-Iowa) for their leadership and hard work in assuring final passage of this important legislation.

ICBA looks forward to President Bush signing the final bill into law.