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ProfNet Experts Available on GOP Tax Plan


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NEW YORK, Nov. 8, 2017 /PRNewswire/ -- Below are experts from the ProfNet network who are available to discuss the GOP tax plan.

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Following are experts from the ProfNet network who are available to discuss various aspects of the GOP tax plan:

Benefits and Drawbacks of GOP Plan
Wayne Winegarden
Senior Fellow
Pacific Research Institute, San Francisco
Winegarden is available to discuss the benefits and drawbacks of the GOP's tax reform bill. This year, Winegarden completed a four-part study (see link below) detailing how America can return to the days of 3 percent annual economic growth with smart tax policy. He's also a regular contributor to Forbes and Investor's Business Daily, and leads the EconoSTATS project at George Mason University. He would be a great source to speak on whether the GOP's tax reform plan meets the growth-friendly standards of his research. He also can comment on the corporate side of the bill versus the individual side of the bill. He has an extensive background and knowledge of tax reform in the United States and would be a great source for reporters covering it.
Contact: Madeline Auerbach,

Considerations for Finance Departments
Nancy Manzano
Chief Tax Officer
Vertex Inc.
Manzano can discuss situations and factors finance departments should be considering, as well as other recommendations for corporations now that the bill is public. She is a director in the Chief Tax Office at Vertex, providing insight regarding in-house corporate tax department operations and working on the development of the company's income tax solutions under Vertex Enterprise. Prior to joining Vertex, Manzano was a tax director at 21st Century/Farmers Insurance and MBNA America Bank, and worked in the Philadelphia office of KPMG. She is a licensed C.P.A., has a Bachelor's degree in Business Administration from Drexel University and a Master of Science in Taxation from Widener University.
Contact: Jordan Rankin,

Corporate Tax Reform
Graham Summers, MBA
President and Chief Market Strategist
Phoenix Capital Research
Summer is available to discuss corporate tax reform: "The current tax plan, as it stands, is focusing on corporate tax reform, with the notion that an employer will somehow 'pass on' their savings to employees via raises. First off, while the phrase 'corporate taxes' is a great political prop, the reality is that nearly 50% of large corporations pay *zero* corporate income tax. That is not a typo. In 2012, the Government Accountability Office performed a study in which it discovered that 43% of companies with $10+ million in assets pay *zero* corporate income tax. It's not as if the other 57% are picking up the slack, either. It is well known that large corporations go above and beyond to avoid paying the full, required tax rate. As Forbes noted earlier this year, Apple pays a 25% tax rate (the official U.S. corporate rate is supposed to be 35%). Microsoft pays a 16% tax rate. Alphabet (Google) pays 19%. General Electric and Exxon Mobil appear to have paid no corporate income tax in 2016. My point is this: Pursuing corporate tax reform is a pointless exercise. Few, if any, corporations pay anywhere near the official corporate tax rate of 35%."
Summers is president and chief marketing strategist at Phoenix Capital Research, an independent investment research firm located in Washington, D.C.
Contact: Wendy J. Gordon,

Corporate Tax Reform
Bruce P. Ely
Partner and Chair, State and Local Tax (SALT) Practice Team, Bradley Arant Boult Cummings LLP
Co-chair, America Bar Association Tax Section's Task Force on the Impact of the Federal Partnership Audit Rules on the States
"Since House Bill (HB) 1 retains the 39.6 percent top rate, the delta between that rate and the special maximum 25 percent rate for 'qualified business income' will certainly give tax planners an incentive to find as much of the company's income as possible to be attributable to 'capital' rather than services. But it appears the drafters have built in some intricate safe harbors and formulas that most taxpayers will probably follow in order to avoid a battle with the IRS down the road. Parsing those provisions of the Bill is challenging, to say the least. [Reference is Section 1004 of the House Bill, creating new Section 4 of the IRC.] As expected, Section 1004 of the bill prevents personal services firms such as doctors, lawyers, accountants, engineers and architects, athletes, financial services advisors and so forth from qualifying *any* of their income for the special 25 percent PTE business income rate."
Contact: Randy

Corporate Taxes
Dr. Christopher Metzler
"While big companies would get a significantly lower 20 percent corporate rate, down from 35 percent, they would face new limits on their ability to deduct interest on their loans, a new global minimum tax on their overseas earnings, and new taxes on U.S. companies heading abroad. This aspect will be very contentious for conservatives since believe that it will hit consumers in the pocket by causing a rise in the cost of essential goods."
Dr. Metzler appears regularly on Fox News Strategy Room, CNN, MSNBC and CNBC, where he provides expert commentary on U.S. and global affairs, politics, human rights, human capital, diversity and related issues. He travels extensively speaking to colleges, organizations and businesses in the United States and globally. He has also appeared on BBC News, Sky News, C-Span, The Fox Nightly Scoreboard and The O'Reilly Factor. His radio appearances have included Brain and the Judge, The Monica Crowley Show, The Joe Madison Show, The Tavis Smiley Show, The Bev Smith Show and more. In addition to a Master's degree in Human Rights from Columbia University, he also holds a Ph.D. from University of Aberdeen in Law, as well as diplomas and postgraduate certificates in law. He is a member of The University of Oxford and a member of Kellogg College at the University of Oxford. At Oxford, he read international human rights law leading to a law degree (MsT) in international human rights law from Oxford. A seasoned academic and legal scholar, he is a public figure with numerous TV and other media appearances.
Contact: Stacey D. Barker,

Debate Around Offsets Versus Lower Tax Rate
Jon Traub
Managing Principal, Washington National Tax Group, Deloitte Tax
Former Staff Director, House Ways and Means Committee
"The introduction of the House Republicans' tax bill shows a strong desire by Congress and the president to enact a long-overdue overhaul of the tax code by the end of the year. Whether that is achievable or not is another question. Uncertainty still remains a dominant concern in the tax community. One thing we hear from tax executives and CFOs is that the lack of certainty around the tax code is inhibiting business investment. The bill also affirms the concerns we hear from tax professionals about the depth and breadth of offsets needed to finance lower tax rates. The next few weeks may be among some of the busiest for tax policy that we have seen in Washington for some time. Companies will be well-served to engage in scenario modeling and planning to better understand what reform -- if it were to pass -- might mean for them."
Traub is the managing principal of the Deloitte's Washington national tax group and former staff director for the House Ways and Means Committee. In his current role at Deloitte Tax, Traub leads a team that identifies, evaluates and monitors legislative proposals, and interprets the practical issues surrounding the application of tax proposals on behalf of Deloitte's clients. He assists Deloitte's clients in their efforts to stay aware of the numerous and often complicated debates in tax policy. With considerable career experience in the legislative arena, especially in tax policy, Traub is able to provide clients with critical insight on the most complicated issues impacting their businesses and offer recommendations and guidance.
Contact: Noelle Bensaid,

Economics of Tax Plan
Oren Jacobson
Lead Market Analyst
New Home Star
In response to the GOP tax plan, Jacobson can address whether homebuilders/Realtor associations are right/wrong to oppose the bill in its current form; the macroeconomic impact of the potential tax bill, including short-term effects and potential mid- to long-term effects; and the potential impact on demand given the distributional impacts of the bill.
Says Jacobson: "At first glance, the GOP plan, like all modern versions of tax reform (cuts) pursued by the GOP, is based on the belief that our economic challenges are on the supply side. As such, the benefits of this plan are supply-side focused. In other words, this plan is intended to make it easier and less expensive for those with capital to invest, with the belief that this investment will lead to economic growth. The plan, as released today, will not pass and is the opening salvo of what will be negotiations in both chambers. As such, we should temper any judgements beyond outlining the basic economic logic of this plan."
Jacobsen holds a Master's in Economics and Policy Analysis.
Contact: Robin Plous,

Impact of 'Tax Cut and Jobs Act' on Small Manufacturers
Don Danner
Chair of Accounting and Finance
Aurora University
"While the impact on individuals in general is muted by the restructuring of the tax burden, the big news tucked away in the GOP tax bill is in business tax. Corporate tax rates are being reduced to 20% from 35% for corporations and limited to 25% on personal service organizations (doctors, lawyers and family businesses). In addition, full deduction of capital equipment is included which in many cases will result in significant tax savings in exchange for making technological investments. This could be a boom to small manufacturers and any company looking at upgrading technology. These steps could have a significant impact on productivity and lead to the job growth and higher wages that the bill advertises as its purpose."
Danner is the chair of the Department of Accounting and Finance at Aurora University. Prior to this position, Danner served 24 years as the chief financial officer of several privately held companies, including Aspen Marketing Services, United Asset Coverage Inc., and Telcorp Inc., and as an employee of IBM Corporation.
Contact: Hadley Dreibelbis,

Impact on Businesses/Individuals
Bill Smith
Managing Director and Leader of the National Tax Office
Smith is available to analyze the GOP tax plan and its impact on businesses/individuals. He has more than 30 years of experience in both the public and private sectors, including five years in the office of General Counsel at Deloitte & Touche LLP; five years as a tax lawyer for the Department of Justice in Washington, D.C.; and 12 years in private practice in San Francisco, representing businesses of all sizes and high-wealth individuals in developing and implementing tax strategies or negotiating with the IRS in Tax Court or administratively. Smith assumed his current position more than 15 years ago. In this role, he consults nationally on a broad range of tax services, including foreign and domestic transactional tax planning for corporations, partnerships, LLCs and individuals, such as mergers and acquisitions, domestic and international restructuring of businesses and investments, and negotiating partnership and other transactions.
Contact: Rachelle Gaynor,

Impact on Companies
Bernadette Pinamont
Chief Tax Officer, Income Tax
Vertex Inc.
Pinamont can discuss situations and factors finance departments should be considering, as well as other recommendations for corporations now that the bill is public. Pinamont is the chief tax officer – income tax in the Chief Tax Office at Vertex, providing insight regarding in-house corporate tax department operations and working on the development of the company's income tax solutions under Vertex Enterprise. Prior to joining Vertex, Pinamont was vice president tax for Endo Pharmaceuticals Inc. and head of U.S. Tax for AstraZeneca Pharmaceuticals. Her 30-year tax career also includes the corporate tax departments of DuPont, Syngenta, and Tyco Toys and, initially, EY. She is a graduate of Seton Hall University, from which she earned both a B.S in Accounting and Juris Doctor. She is a licensed attorney and CPA.
Contact: Jordan Rankin,

Impact on Consumers
Greg McBride, CFA
Chief Financial Analyst
"This is all just a proposal. Don't change your tax planning based on this. We've still got a long way to go. People don't buy houses, necessarily, because of the mortgage interest deduction but it does impact the size of the house that you buy. I'm glad to see that the 401(k) deduction has been preserved. The last thing that we need to see, particularly when so many people are under-saved for retirement, is something that takes away a valuable incentive that gets people to save in the first place."
With two decades of experience in personal finance, McBride has the unique ability to provide both in-depth commentary and practical advice to consumers. He has appeared on hundreds of national cable and network broadcasts and is routinely quoted by major print outlets.
Contact: Ted Rossman,

Impact on Consumers
Eric Bronnenkant, CPA, CFP
Head of Tax
Bronnenkant is available to provide commentary on a number of aspects of the plan, including how it will impact consumers, specifically investments, 401(k) charitable giving and how they can best prepare. He has more than 15 years of experience, previously working at Ernst and Young and Fidelity Investments. While at EY, he was part of the Tax Guide Editorial Board for several years. Eric holds M.S degrees in Accounting and Taxation from Seton Hall University as well as an MBA in Quantitative Finance from NYU. He also services as an adjunct taxation professor at Seton Hall University.
Contact: Quincy Zhai,

Impact on Corporations and Individuals of All Tax Brackets
Joseph Perry
Tax & Business Services Leader
Marcum LLP
Perry can speak on the GOP tax bill just released. He services high-net-worth individuals, so he can discuss some of the implications for those making over $200,000. For those individuals, the tax code has *not* been simplified, says Perry. He can also speak on: itemized deductions and the individual tax rate; pass-through entities; carried Interest; and the corporate tax rate. He is well-versed and experienced in serving as the media's go-to "tax expert." Yesterday he spoke on Bloomberg TV and Fox News to provide insights on the new tax plan.
Contact: Christine Hardman,

Impact on Divorce Settlements
Christopher Melcher
Walzer Melcher LLP
One little-known aspect of the Republican plan is the elimination of alimony or spousal support as a tax credit, which will have a major impact on divorce settlements. According to Melcher, this change will drag out potential settlements, as the person paying the support won't want to pay as much since it would no longer be a tax credit. It would create major problems. Also, for people waiting for the right time to divorce, you can expect a number of divorce filings this month and December. The irony is that usually November and December are "slow" divorce months as people wait until after the holidays to file (making January a big divorce month).
Melcher specializes in complex family law litigation and the preparation of premarital agreements. He also handles appeals of family law judgments and writ proceedings from family law orders. His typical client is a business owner, celebrity, or trust beneficiary.
Contact: Olivier Gibbons, Esq.,

Impact on Individual and Corporate Taxes
Luo Zuo
Associate Professor
Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management
Cornell University
Zuo's research is at the intersection of accounting and finance, and can be divided into two strands. The first explores the individual effects of managers, investors and auditors; the unifying theme is that an individual's judgement and decision-making are affected by their incentives, information and behavioral traits. The second strand of research is focused on corporate taxes. Zuo's paper, "Sharing Risk with the Government: How Taxes Affect Corporate Risk-Taking" (published in Journal of Accounting Research), won the Best Paper Award at the 2016 MIT Asia Conference in Accounting. His work has also appeared in leading journals, including American Economic Review, The Journal of Accounting and Economics, The Journal of Financial Economics, Management Science, The Review of Financial Studies and The Accounting Review (where he also serves on the editorial board). His research has been featured in The Economist, NBER Digest, The Wall Street Journal and other media sources.
Contact: Brianne O'Donnell,

Impact on Wealthy Families
Bijan Golkar
CEO, Senior Advisor
FPC Investment Advisory, Inc.
Golkar is a Northern California investment advisor that has been a licensed tax preparer since 2007 and earned the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) certification in 2013. He is frequently quoted in national media as an expert on investing and financial planning topics. In addition to his duties as the firm's CEO, Golkar provides comprehensive advice to high-net-worth individuals and families. He often creates and leads teams of legal, accounting and insurance experts to help these clients meet their goals. He also consults with small businesses on buyouts, employee benefits and other matters.
ProfNet Profile:
Expert Contact:

Impact on Workplace and Labor Market
Brian Kropp
HR Practice Leader
Kropp can speak about how this tax plan will or will not affect the U.S. workplace and labor market, specifically in terms of immigration. Kropp recently spoke on this topic, saying, "There's a lot of second-, third- or fourth-generation Americans who aren't willing to take low-skill requirement jobs for the wages that are being offered. Employers in favor of immigration often have difficulty finding American-born workers with the necessary qualifications to fill vacancies. Because of the program's limited size (GOP tax plan), it's unlikely that ending it alone would have much of an impact -- positive or negative -- on American-born workers."
Kropp is HR practice leader at CEB, a subsidiary of consulting firm Gartner.
Contact: Lauren Stredler,

Individual and Corporate Tax Policy
Shaun Hunley
Technical Editor, PPC Products
Thomson Reuters Tax & Accounting
Hunley, a technical editor of PPC products for Thomson Reuters Checkpoint within the Tax & Accounting business of Thomson Reuters, is available to discuss tax reform (individual and corporate), emerging federal tax issues, corporate tax, tax policy and procedure, and mergers and acquisitions.
Hunley has over 10 years of tax experience with national accounting firms. Early in his career, Hunley led research and development tax incentive studies for Fortune 500 companies. Following this, he specialized in tax due diligence, corporate restructurings, and international tax compliance and planning. Hunley also has extensive experience in advising small businesses and closely held companies on a variety of tax matters. He received a J.D. from Texas Tech University School of Law and an LL.M. in Taxation from New York University School of Law. Recent articles include "Can The Tax Code Really Be Simple?" in Forbes (see, and "Balancing Competing Interests in the IRS Future State" in CPA Practice Advisor (see
Contact: Stephen Sobey,

Likelihood of the GOP Tax Plan Becoming Law
John Gimigliano
Principal-in-Charge of Federal Tax Legislative Services
"As the bill moves though the legislative process, the shape of reform will become clearer in the coming weeks and months -- but only slowly, and perhaps frustratingly so."
Prior to joining KPMG in 2008, Gimigliano was senior tax counsel for the Committee on Ways and Means and staff director for the Subcommittee on Select Revenue Measures in the U.S. House of Representatives. He is based in Washington, D.C.
Contact: Robert Nihen,; or Taylor Ovalle,

Tax Issues
Steven Cruz
Resuelve, Inc.
Cruz is president of Resuelve, Inc., a Washington, D.C.-based, political campaign, issue advocacy, and corporate branding consulting firm that fights for economic freedom and equality. Prior to founding Resuelve, Cruz previously served as a Koch network spokesman for an array of issues, including healthcare, taxes, corporate welfare reform, criminal justice reform, and immigration. Cruz has publicly provided commentary to numerous media outlets regarding GOP legislation, including how Obamacare and tax issues could impact the elderly, the Hispanic community, and middle-aged men. He most recently appeared on Telemundo (see clip below) to discuss and break down the Republican's replacement bill. He has also provided commentary for countless tax-related issues in media outlets worldwide, including CNN, Voice of America, Huffington Post, Forbes, and Washington Examiner, among others.
Contact: Alexandra Booze,

Tax Law
Bradley Heim
Associate Professor, School of Public and Environmental Affairs
Indiana University
Heim, a tax law expert, is available to discuss any aspect of the Republican tax bill. A former financial economist at the Office of Tax Analysis at the U.S. Department of the Treasury, Heim is an expert public finance, labor economics, and econometrics. He is well-versed in the impacts of tax policies on labor supply, income and earnings, health insurance purchases, and the analysis of labor, business and household income dynamics.
Contact: Stephanie M. Guzmán,

Tax Planning
Greg Hammer
Tax and Wealth Advisor
Hammer Financial Group, Inc.
Hammer specializes in coordinated, holistic financial planning for Lake County, Ind., and Chicago-area residents who are approaching retirement or currently retired. Bringing tax preparation and planning, Medicare supplements, estate planning, insurance and investments all under one roof, Hammer aims to provide complete and convenient financial solutions for the best interest of the clients he serves. He trains and coaches independent financial advisors nationwide on how to build their business to better serve the holistic financial needs of American families. In particular, he has helped develop and refine processes to integrate tax preparation and Medicare supplement services into a financial advisory practice -- a unique addition within the financial industry designed for the ultimate convenience and benefit of clients at and near retirement. He earned a B.A. in Applied Mathematics with a focus in economics from Yale University and has more than 23 years of experience in the financial services industry. In addition to his series 6, 63, 65 and 26 and life and health licenses, Hammer maintains Master Elite Membership with Ed Slott's Elite IRA Advisor Group for continued study and mastery of IRAs and applicable tax laws.
Contact: Mindy Eras,

Tax Plan
Altair M. Gobo
U.S. Financial Services, Fairfield, N.J.
Gobo, author of "Getting to the Green," is a certified financial planner; an adjunct faculty member, faculty coordinator and academic advisor at Farleigh Dickinson University's financial planning program; and is on the advisory board at Montclair State University. He has served as president and chairman of the board of directors at the Northern New Jersey Chapter of the International Association for Financial Planning, and been a guest on CNBC, NBC, ABC, MSNBC, Fox News, Fox Business News, Bloomberg and CNN.
Contact: Tracy G. Minsky,

Tax Relief
John McKinley
Professor of Practice
The Dyson School of Applied Economics, SC Johnson College of Business
Cornell University
McKinley is a lecturer in accounting and taxation at the Dyson School of Applied Economics at Cornell University's SC Johnson College of Business. He teaches courses in financial accounting, auditing and assurance and federal income taxation. He has written about and studied a range of tax-related topics, including tax relief for small employer retirement plans; tax relief for student loan forgiveness; schoolteachers' deductions; and tax relief for homeowners.
Contact: Brianne O'Donnell,

Tax/Retirement Planning
Ed Slott, CPA
Founder, Ed Slott & Company
Slott is a New York-based nationally recognized IRA expert, television personality, and best-selling author who has dedicated his life to educating Americans on saving for retirement, and the intricacies of IRAs. He was named "The Best Source for IRA Advice" by The Wall Street Journal, and USA Today wrote, "It would be tough to find anyone who knows more about IRAs than CPA Slott." He is the author of "The Retirement Savings Time Bomb … And How to Defuse It" and "Parlay Your IRA into a Family Fortune." His most recent books include "Fund Your Future: A Tax-Smart Savings Plan in Your 20s and 30s" and "The Retirement Decisions Guide: 125 Ways to Save and Stretch Your Wealth." He is the host of the 2015 public television show "Ed Slott's Retirement Road Map," which airs in markets nationwide. He is a frequent columnist and resource for national media, and has hosted many best-selling public television specials. Through his firm, Slott provides the highest level of IRA training to financial professionals, CPAs and attorneys; and through his website, he offers free resources to consumers.
Contact: Mindy



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