Republicans Are Right to Reform Higher Ed's Tax Breaks

Grad Students Would Be Hit By Massive Tax Hike Under House GOP Plan

IU President McRobbie shares statement on proposed tax reform legislation with University Faculty Council

It can be used to improve economic efficiency and reduce inequality. Rather than an attack on higher education, it is an attempt to correct inefficient and distortive measures long protected by an entrenched industry which benefits from them.

The House version eliminates private activity bonds, which denies access to the tax-free bond market for private colleges and universities and complicates many productive public-private partnerships. It's a record of great success.

These aspects of the current federal tax code make it possible for more people with talent and a strong work ethic to earn a college or advanced degree.

A security guard from the Division of Public Security, Darryl Richardson, said Amy Gutmann was not in her office when the work-in was taking place.

JENNA FREUDENBURG: Well, it is a bit of a tricky one in the Senate, because the Senate version of the bill does not have this particular provision that we have been discussing that would tax our tuition waivers. Changes to Tax Credits will provide about $18 billion of the $65 billion in revenue over 10 years.

UO graduate students said they are protesting the House of Representatives' proposal to eliminate a long-standing tax exemption for tuition waivers. Graduate assistants will pay more for their education. It's enough to get by, but saving is still a struggle, even with the university waiving about $12,000 of his tuition costs.

On the steps of the administrative building and through Coffman Plaza, a few hundred students called on university leaders to denounce the House version of a federal tax plan.

Graduate students overall felt the protest was a success.

Yes, there is an image problem, perhaps more. First-generation college students are motivated, independent and resourceful. I am now in the third year of my PhD studies, and while I do teach, I am not taking any classes. It is an urgent and growing problem. This may also have a larger impact on worldwide graduate students, as their out-of-state designation would yield higher taxes.

"I am very sure I am going to walk out, but it is not a decision I take lightly", said Jake Grossman, University Ph.D. candidate in ecology, evolution, and behavior.

Wiebe is apprehensive about the tax plan's potential impact on his financial future.

The U.S. Senate is now drafting its own version of the tax bill.

The U.S. Senate could vote on the tax plan this week. Slashing corporate taxes by 20 percent, along with deregulation, should boost investment and worker productivity by a like amount and add two- or three-tenths of a percentage points to long-term annual growth.

"This provision would harm the welfare of many of our students, making it hard to recruit students and even threaten the ability of many departments to sustain their doctoral programs", wrote Michael Burawoy, chair of the Berkeley Faculty Association, in a message to faculty and student leaders. A bachelor's degree yields, on average, a 15 percent return, although that percentage will likely decrease.

UNC graduate students are holding a phone bank Wednesday night to contact elected officials, telling them not to support the plan. They are also arguing that the charitable giving deduction be universal-meaning that it be available to everyone in addition to the standard deduction. Relative to other sectors of the economy, universities are becoming less efficient, less productive, and, consequently, more costly.

Why are graduate students important to research institutions like CU Boulder?

"You don't need to have a mask on if you're going to speak to students". But universities are channeling grant money away from the sources that could support this work and into their own coffers by calling it tuition. Expect student debt to increase. In return for this assistance and as part of their training, graduate students help support faculty research and teach undergraduate courses in the humanities, social sciences, STEM fields, and beyond. If their tax burden increases, they'll be out of options.

Former Arizona Republican state legislator Frank Antenori encapsulated the sentiments of a growing anti-intellectual movement in a November 25 piece in The Washington Post: "A lot of Republicans would say they go there to get brainwashed and learn how to become activists and basically go out in the world and cause trouble".

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