By: Rep. Jim Sensenbrenner
April 17, 2018

Great news for Wisconsinites: Today is Tax Day 2018, and it marks the last day that you’ll be burdened by an outdated and cumbersome tax code. Filing your taxes under the pro-family, pro-growth Tax Cuts & Jobs Act will be fairer and simpler than ever before.

Since the tax code’s last overhaul in 1986, our code has exploded into more than 70,000 pages of loopholes and carve-outs, making it time-consuming and frustrating for families and small businesses to complete their taxes. Reform was long overdue.

Fortunately, after today’s tax filing deadline, those frustrations will be history.

Under our new system, every American can take advantage of the doubled standard deduction. Additionally, families can utilize an increased child tax credit. And no one will be forced to pay a penalty tax for deciding to forgo purchasing health insurance.

Immediately after President Trump signed the tax bill into law, Americans across the country began reaping the benefits of tax reform.

In February, the IRS issued new tax withholding instructions to businesses, allowing 90 percent of American employees to take home bigger paychecks.

Not only are most Americans keeping more of their hard-earned money, but many of them have also received additional perks from their employers, often coming in the form cash bonuses, retirement investments, and increased benefits.

For example, as a direct result of the tax cuts, full-time employees at the Pewaukee-based Trico Corporation will receive $650 bonuses and increased contributions into their 401(k) accounts. The company will also hire more full-time workers to fill new positions. Town Bank, which has more than a dozen locations across southeastern Wisconsin, is raising its minimum wage to $15 an hour. And earlier this year, Sussex-based Quad/Graphics announced that it would invest $22 million into its employees’ retirement accounts.

These are just a few of the many tax reform success stories that are occurring across our state and across the nation. As of early April, 4 million
workers at more than 400 businesses nationwide have received one of these benefits.

New tax savings are being passed along to Wisconsinites in other ways too. The Citizens Utility Board of Wisconsin projects that utility companies
will save more than $275 million under the new code — a cost savings that will ultimately be realized by consumers.

Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi and her fellow Democrats bemoaned thousand-dollar bonuses as “crumbs.” But, this thinking is flawed. Most American families don’t think $1,000 is small change — but rather an investment in their children’s college fund, a much-needed vacation, or a way to pay down debt.

Ms. Pelosi also warned the tax cuts would bring “Armageddon,” yet after eight years of failed policies and economic stagnation, these reforms have led to steady economic growth. There are signs of renewed economic optimism all around Wisconsin, not the least of which is our record low unemployment of 2.9 percent.

Most significantly, the average family of four in Wisconsin’s Fifth Congressional District can expect to save an additional $2,564 this year. These are real, tangible results that even the most cynical among us cannot deny.

This year, Tax Day is a day to celebrate, not only because the successes of tax reform are overwhelming, but also because they are just the beginning. We promised more jobs and bigger paychecks, and so far we’ve delivered just that for folks in Wisconsin and across America.

You can read the piece online here.

*Note this piece has been updated to reflect the benefits Quad/Graphics provided to its employees as a result of tax reform.