A deal appears to be in the works on the estate tax, a key sticking point in budget negotiations.
House Finance Committee Chairman Reuven Carlyle, a Democrat who has been in talks with Republicans on the issue, tweeted last night:
Formal agreement on an estate tax fix between House & Senate expected Thurs, likely avoiding payouts Fri. New text of HB 2075 avail by 9 am.— Reuven Carlyle (@Reuvencarlyle) June 13, 2013
Today is the last day to avert the loss of revenue.
UPDATE 9 a.m.: Senate Majority Leader Rodney Tom said through a spokesman that there’s no deal yet, but negotiators are making progress.
UPDATE 9:30 a.m.: Carlyle’s amendment is posted online. It ties the $2 million threshold to qualify for the tax to inflation; gives a $2.5 million deduction for the value of a family business worth up to $6 million; and offsets the deduction by raising the top four rates by 1 percent each.
In a summary, House Democrats wrote the new proposal “represents an agreement reached last night with Senate Rs.”
Still unclear, though, is whether the Republicans will stick to their guns on a demand for policy changes in exchange for agreeing to the estate-tax fix. They want to use taxes as a lever to force what they see as reforms in workers’ compensation, teacher assignments and the growth of the budget.