$300 Billion Budget Deal Includes Opportunity Zone, Tax Extenders
President Trump today ended a brief government shutdown by signing the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018, a two-year, $300 billion increase to the defense and nondefense spending caps for fiscal years 2018 and 2019. The bill includes provisions to certify every low-income community in Puerto Rico as a qualified Opportunity Zone, to extend the renewable energy investment tax credit (ITC) for certain orphaned technologies according to the previously authorized five-year phasedown for the 30 percent ITC and to extend Sections 45L and 179D energy-efficiency provisions through the end of 2017. The House voted 240-186 for the legislation after the Senate voted 71-28 for passage. The legislation also provides up to $90 billion in disaster aid to communities affected by the 2017 hurricanes, wildfires and other natural disasters; a suspension of the debt ceiling through March 1, 2019; and an extension of the continuing resolution to keep the federal government operating through March 23. Congress is expected to consider fiscal year 2018 omnibus appropriations legislation to authorize spending through Sept. 30 before March 23. Provisions of the Senate’s Cantwell-Hatch bill to expand the low-income housing tax credit (LIHTC) were proposed in an earlier version of the bill, but were not included not the final bill.