The Environmental Protection Agency announced Sept. 26 that it is considering a plan to lower the 2018 biomass-based biodiesel requirement by as much as 315 million gallons and the 2019 volume requirement down to the 1 billion gallons required by law. It requested comments within 15 days per the Federal Register.
Republican leadership just released a tax reform framework document that will impact reconciliation instructions for the FY 2018 budget. Of interest for agriculture is the indication that net interest costs may no longer qualify as a deductible expense and businesses would be allowed to immediately write off the cost of new machinery in depreciable assets. Tax cuts contained in the plan will cost an estimated $1.5 trillion.
Last month, Congress passed a Continuing Resolution (CR) to fund the government past the end of the fiscal year on Sept. 30 through Dec. 8 and lift the national debt ceiling through the same time period. The CR has $15 billion in aid for natural disasters, including a temporary reauthorization of the National Flood Insurance Program. Congress now has until Dec. 8 to finish 12 annual appropriation bills.