Tax Bill Could Hand DeVos First Major School Choice Victory
United State: The GOP tax plan could hand the Trump administration and Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos their first major school choice victory.
As it stands, the brokered deal between House and Senate Republicans, which is slated for a final vote sometime next week, includes language that would allow individuals to use 529 savings accounts – currently reserved for college-related expenses – to also cover expenses at K-12 private schools, including religious schools.
Happy with the addition of the 529 piece in the bill, DeVos told the Associated Press on Thursday after a higher education summit hosted by the Education Department. But beyond that, I know that this is like sausage making, so I am looking forward to the results and to a successful outcome.
Indeed, final passage of the tax package is not given, as a handful of Senate Republicans have voiced concerns over various aspects of the bill. But should Republican leadership wrangle the numbers needed, it would hand DeVos her first legislative win.
The provision, which was included in the original version of the House tax bill but only added to the Senate bill after an amendment offered by Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, was adopted upon a tie-breaking vote from Vice President Mike Pence, would be a major victory for DeVos, the billionaire private school choice advocate who had thus far been shut down in attempts to pursue the administration's top education priority.
Another provision in the tax plan that could have major implications for K-12 education relates to the state and local tax deduction, sometimes called the SALT deduction. Language in the newly brokered proposal would allow taxpayers to choose a property tax deduction or a deduction for state and local income taxes, up to $10,000 in either case.usnews