Tax Attic: Tax Cut and Jobs Act is a tricky subject

I have been writing this article since 1996 and something happened in the September 27 Squire that hasn’t happened before.  My September 20 article was the subject of two “Letters to the Editor”.  I tend to get more personal comments and direct emails than letters so two in one week was unique.  The first letter was by Robert Stegmier thanking me for writing about the coming changes.  I appreciate the comment, Mr. Stegmier.  The second letter was by Robert O. Smith pointing out that the Tax Cuts and Job Act (TCJA) is much more complicated than I explained.  I couldn’t agree more. Every change, like the State and Local Tax (SALT) deduction, interacts with many other provisions.  Now I do have to admit that I thought long and hard on how to present the subject of that previous week’s article-how the Tax Cuts and Job Act affects taxpayers with more than $10,000 of State and Local Taxes (SALT).  It’s a tricky subject and trying to adequately explain “tricky” in 600 words is fairly hard to do. As pointed out by Mr. Smith, I took a small bite of the apple, so to speak.  It does appear like there is enough material in the TCJA for me to write for a few more years!  Thanks to you two Roberts for your letters.

This past Monday was a bitter-sweet Monday for me. Since I didn’t run for re-election, the Monday, October 8 City Council Meeting was my last one.  The November meeting will be held on the 12th.  Two new Council members will have been elected on Election Day, Nov. 6. Those two new members will take the oath on the 12th and one will get the seat that I have kept warm since the residents first elected me 8 years ago.  Thank you for putting your trust in me.  Maybe I will see if I can take my name plate with me as a souvenir.  During those years, I have put on a suit and headed down to City Hall on the second Monday of every month for the regularly scheduled, 7pm, City Council Meeting. It’s been my pleasure to serve the residents of Rockford during that time.  It’s been a real treat to work with the City staff.  We have a dedicated and hard working staff.  In those 8 years, there have been a number of staff changes. Some of them voluntarily have moved on to other jobs or retired and one other not voluntary at all, namely losing our departed friend and city manager, Michael Young.  I was part of the team and process that concluded with the hiring of Thad Beard as our City Manager.  It has been great seeing him successfully acclimate himself to leading our city.  In between Michael and Thad, the staff proved just how good they truly are.  We were able to take our time; let us heal as much as possible from the loss; and find someone who is a nice fit for us. That wasn’t necessarily a joyful time to be on City Council but it was an important time to be on City Council.  Chief Dave Jones and City Clerk Chris Bedford divided up the responsibilities and both did what they do; make sure the City efficiently moves forward.  Infrastructure projects in the works got completed; new ones were put on the books; and the funding for future projects was put into place.  My thanks to Dave and Chris. Neither of them is the boastful type but both of them really stepped up when it was needed the most. Let’s not forget either the job that Jamie Davies did and does day-in and day-out.  Jamie heads up the Public Services Department leading the people who keep the city looking it’s best all day long, every day.  There are a number of nice projects coming down the pike, so to speak, that Thad is working on that will benefit all of us.  Now I will get to read about them in the Squire just like everyone else.  This is Jerry Coon signing off.

Jerry Coon is an Enrolled Agent.

He owns Action Tax Service on Northland Dr in Rockford.

Contact Jerry at