Main components of GOP payroll tax cut extension

AP News
Posted: Dec 09, 2011 3:21 PM
Main components of GOP payroll tax cut extension

The main components of the House Republican plan to extend the Social Security payroll tax cut through 2012:

_ Extends for one year the reduction of the payroll tax from 6.2 percent to 4.2 percent of wages. Cost: $121 billion.

_ Extends benefits for the unemployed but gradually reduces the maximum for receiving benefits from 99 to 59 weeks. Cost: $34 billion.

_ Prevents doctors who serve Medicare patients from being hit with a 27 percent cut in reimbursement rates. Instead, there would be a 1 percent increase for 2012 and 2013. Cost: $39 billion.

_Extends the current pay freeze for federal workers, including members of Congress, through 2013. Savings: $26 billion.

_Changes the co-pay structure for civilian federal retirees. Savings: $36 billion.

_Increases guarantee fees on mortgage-backed securities sold to Freddie Mac and Fannie Mae. Savings: $38 billion.

_Includes sales of broadband spectrum. Savings: $16 billion.

_Eliminates a subsidy in the National Flood Insurance Program. Savings: $4 billion.

_Calls for preventing Social Security overpayments. Savings: $3 billion.

_Denies child tax credits to illegal immigrants. Savings: $9.4 billion.

_Gradually increases Medicare premiums for higher income beneficiaries. Savings: $31 billion.

_Repeals prevention and public health fund, targets waste in the health care act passed last year. Saving: $43 billion.

_Accelerates a decision on the Keystone XL energy pipeline from Canada that the Obama administration says should be delayed until 2013.

_Includes a House-passed bill to delay EPA rules to reduce pollution on industrial boilers.

_Includes provisions to let states require some applicants for unemployment benefits to take drug tests and prevent welfare recipients from spending their benefits in strip clubs, liquor stores and casinos.

Not included in the GOP package:

_An extension of the Alternative Minimum Tax. The cost of the extension in 2011 was $136.7 billion.

_Other tax breaks that are often extended on an annual basis, including a tax credit for research and experimentation ($13.3 billion) and a deduction for state and local sales taxes ($5.5 billion).

_A surtax on people with incomes of more than $1 million, a main element of Democratic proposals extending the payroll tax cut.