Tip of the cap to Brad Plummer of the Washington Post for unearthing these gems in the “fiscal cliff” bill passed by Congress:
- A $547 million annual subsidy for rum distillers. The money comes from an import tariff on rum, which is distributed to Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands, which in turn use it to prop up their local distilleries.
- An extension of special access to tax-exempt financing for development near the World Trade Center site in New York. It was intended to assist with reconstruction, but Bloomberg News reported that bond money is paying for luxury apartments as well as a new corporate headquarters for Goldman Sachs.
- NASCAR is all about speed, of course, and the bill extends a special tax provision for builders of race tracks to accelerate deprecation .
- A new tax deduction allowing Hollywood film studios to deduct up to $15 million in costs if more than three-quarters of a movie is completed in the United States – more if they shoot in a low-income community.
You can see some more examples in Plummer’s blog at washingtonpost.com.
- Jim Sweeney