Quiz: Can you find the fakes?

Advocacy

Andrew Seifert, JD, tax consultant, Wipfli LLP | June/July 2017 Footnote

No one's ever accused modern-day lawmakers of being boring.

In my years of sitting in legislative committee meetings, working with politicians and sussing out pertinent proposals that affect CPAs and the CPA profession, there have been some legislative doozies offered up.

In any given year, legislators introduce thousands of bills to implement new laws and repeal or modify existing laws. Their reasons for introducing legislation are many and vary as much as the individual bills.

Some of the more common reasons include:

Requests from constituents, state agencies, the governor or advocacy groups

Political statements and for use in future elections

To create regulations for new services or products that continue to be developed and invented

Every introduced bill potentially affects the CPA profession, the businesses CPAs work at and the clients you represent, and they must be analyzed to determine any risk. For legislation to advance, it must receive hearings in the committees with jurisdiction over the topic. Some bills make it through this process. Many never find their way on to a committee meeting agenda.

Part of the MNCPA advocacy efforts at the Capitol include looking through the introductions to identify which bills related to the profession are likely to receive a hearing and which bills will not. Communication with legislators is key to knowing what to expect, but legislative staff also provide a lot of insight when trying to identify potential issues.

The general rule for monitoring legislation? Be prepared for anything and expect the unexpected.

As we look back on another eventful year at the Minnesota Capitol, I thought it might be fun to quiz you on your ability to snuff out actual ideas pitched to become law -- again, there are some interesting suggestions -- and those that are made up by me.

Answers are at the bottom of the page. Enjoy!

  1. Establishing a shrimp production incentive program.
  2. Modifying the definition of premium cigars.
  3. Appropriating money for upkeep of the World's Largest Twine Ball Rolled by One Man in Darwin, Minn.
  4. Prohibiting first aid or CPR training requirements for bear-hunting guides.
  5. Branding U.S. Bank Stadium as "The Ship of Today and Tomorrow."
  6. Offering a 64-percent tax cut for any major motion picture production taking place in Minnesota.
  7. Exempting minor league baseball players from minimum wage and overtime requirements.
  8. Promoting Minnesota with "Come for the St. Paul Winter Carnival, stay because your car won't start."
  9. Clarifying that peace officers are permitted to carry their firearms within private establishments.
  10. Expanding deer hunting season from September to January. 

 

 

 

Real: 1, 2, 4, 7, 9; Fake: 3, 5, 6, 8, 10