On June 30, 2010, Governor Deval Patrick signed the 2011 budget act (H4800), which includes credit transparency provisions, extends the historic rehabilitation tax credit, and provides administrative provisions to facilitate collection. The bill takes effect July 1, 2010, unless otherwise stated.
Credit transparency. Effective January 1, 2011, the head of the administrative agency of each tax credit program must submit, on or before May 15 each year, a report to the Commissioner on each tax credit program authorized for the previous calendar year. Tax credits required to be disclosed include the historic preservation tax credit, dairy farm tax credit, USFDA user fees credit, film tax credit, life sciences investment tax credit, low-income housing tax credit, medical device tax credit, refundable research credit, credit under the economic development incentive program, and any transferable or refundable credits under the corporate and personal income tax laws established after January 1, 2011. The report will contain: (1) the identity of each taxpayer receiving an authorized tax credit and from which tax credit program the credit was received; (2) the amount of the authorized tax credit awarded and issued for each taxpayer and each project, if applicable; and (3) the date that the authorized tax credit was awarded and issued for each taxpayer and each project. The report will be a public record. The report will cover only credits awarded or claimed after January 1, 2011. For purposes of the report, the taxpayer is the initial recipient of an authorized tax credit.
Historic rehabilitation tax credit. The historic rehabilitation tax credit is extended for a 12-year period up to December 31, 2017. Under current law the Commissioner, in consultation with the Massachusetts Historical Commission, is authorize to annually grant a historic rehabilitation tax credit in an amount not to exceed $50 million per year to qualified taxpayers for the 6-year period beginning January 1, 2006, and ending December 31, 2011.
Determination of partner’s distributive share. The budget act also includes a provision clarifying how a partner’s distributive share of an item of income, loss, deduction or credit from a partnership is determined. It provides that a partner’s distributive share is determined in accordance with the partner’s interest in the partnership, determined by taking into account all facts and circumstances, such as, if the allocation to a partner under the agreement of income, gain, loss, deduction or credit had no substantial economic effect or the partnership agreement does not provide as to the partnership’s distributive share of income, gain, loss, deduction or credit. It also provides that the determination of a partner’s distributive share must take into account rules and principles developed under the Internal Revenue Code and any regulations promulgated thereunder, and adjusted as required or appropriate to properly reflect income and other tax items for Massachusetts tax purposes.
Pass-through entity provision. The budget act includes provisions involving unified audit procedures for pass-through entities. It requires members or indirect owners of a pass-through entity to report items of income, expense or credit derived from the pass-through entity in a manner consistent with reporting of the pass-through entity, except to the extent that a taxpayer, member or indirect owner makes a declaration of inconsistency with its original return. The Commissioner is mandated to establish by regulation unified audit procedures.
Penalty provisions. The budget act amends the additional tax liability provision in cases when the federal government determines a difference from the amount previously reported in the taxable income of a person or the federal credit to which such person may be entitled or in cases when the tax due any other state, U.S. territory or the Dominion of Canada or any of its provinces, on account of any item of Massachusetts gross income of a Massachusetts resident, is finally determined by that jurisdiction to be less than the tax previously reported, and such tax was the basis for a credit claimed by the Massachusetts resident. It provides that failure to report such difference under both circumstances is subject to a penalty of 10% of the additional tax found due. Prior law provided that the penalty is $100 or 10% of the additional tax found due, whichever sum is smaller. A new provision provides that a person who fails to pay to the Commissioner any cigarette excise required to be paid will be personally and individually liable. “Person” includes, but not limited to, an officer or employee of a corporation or a member or employee of a partnership or limited liability company who, as such officer, employee or member, is under a duty to pay over the cigarette excise tax.
Installment and deferred payment sales. The budget act also provides a new provision requiring interest to be paid on some deferred tax liabilities generated from the use of installment sales applicable for tax years beginning on or after January 1, 2010 with respect to installment obligations as of the close of the tax year.
Sales tax provision. The budget act repeals the sales tax provision making it unlawful for any vendor to advertise or hold out or state to the public or any customer that the vendor will assume or absorb the tax or that it will not be added to the selling price of the property or services sold or, if added, it will be refunded.
For more information on these new provisions, contact tax attorney and CPA Moore McLaughlin at MMcLaughlin@McLaughlinQuinn.com or by phone at 401-421-5115 ext. 212.