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Tax conformity changes are a team effort

October 31, 2018  |  Geno Fragnito

Tax conformity changes are a team effort

If you have been watching the news the past two weeks, you have no doubt seen stories about overcoming long odds (1 in 302,575,350, to be exact) to win the $1.6 billion Mega Millions jackpot. The large jackpot piqued the interest and many dreams of people as they thought about what they would do with the money.

What does winning the lottery have in common with passing legislation at the Capitol?

A bill at the Capitol also faces long odds of ever being signed into law. During the 2017-18 legislative cycle, 8,658 bills were introduced and only 182 were signed into law. That’s a success rate of .021 percent -- or about a 1 in 48 chance of a new law passing. Much better than winning the lottery, but still long odds.

Passing legislation may seem like an impossible task, but the odds improve if you enlist in Team CPA at the Capitol.

The 2019 Legislature is faced with figuring out tax conformity, which the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017 made even more complex than previous years. There will be many new legislators joining the incumbents returning to office. They will all have many questions and need information as they learn to work with each other and debate conformity.

The CPA profession finds itself facing a once-in-a-generation opportunity to help shape tax conformity and tax reform in Minnesota. As part of Team CPA, you can do your part in increasing the odds of winning the debate. CPAs work in or represent many sectors of Minnesota’s economy: business owners, business or government advisers, tax practitioners and auditors. Regardless of your role, your education and professional experience helps others break down and understand very complex issues. That’s why legislators need your input as they try to understand the complexities of federal conformity.

Tax conformity is a perennial issue on the MNCPA legislative agenda, and it is an issue where legislators look to CPAs for answers. Do your part to help raise interest and bring attention to the need for conformity.

It has often been said that accomplishing change at the Minnesota Capitol can be compared to running a marathon. Most people prefer a fast sprint, seeing an issue move quickly through the process. But, many times, it can take multiple years to see results. So, it may take more than one conversation to convince them, but remember it takes running more than one mile to complete a marathon. You might not be able to see the finish line right away, but you know it’s out there. Often, slow and steady wins the race to change public policy.

Topics: Legislative & Government Affairs

Geno Fragnito

Geno Fragnito is the MNCPA government relations director, advocating on behalf of the CPA profession. His days consist of last-minute meeting changes, building relationships with lawmakers, helping CPAs navigate state government, and putting in more than 15,000 steps per day walking the halls of the Capitol. Geno unwinds with a little golf and traveling with his family. If he weren’t a lobbyist, Geno would perfect his cast and be a professional fisherman. Geno can be reached at 952-885-5550 or gfragnito@mncpa.org.

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