House GOP leaders are unlikely to make a decision on whether to retroactively pass a group of expiring individual and business tax incentives until next spring, a senior member of the House Ways and Means Committee said on December 12.

Rep. Richard E. Neal, D-Mass., speaking at the annual convention of the New Markets Tax Credit Coalition in Washington, D.C., said that Ways and Means Chairman Dave Camp, R-Mich., will probably decide on whether to pursue comprehensive tax reform by February or March of 2014. If Camp decides that passing tax reform is impossible during an election year, then a retroactive tax extenders bill will probably get a vote in the House, according to Neal.

The economy is struggling and job creation is sluggish, in part, because U.S. businesses will not make investments while tax incentives like the research and development (R&D) credit are on hold, Neal explained. Moreover, as long as passage of comprehensive tax reform is on hold, businesses will be reticent about where to invest roughly $2 trillion in cash, which is sitting on the sidelines.

Neal called for a six-year extension of the R&D tax credit. “You can’t have the R&D credit just languishing, too many people base their investments on what going to happen with the R&D credit,” he said. The same is true with the child tax credit and the education credit, he added, saying, “All these issues are just hanging out there.”

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