Standing at CNY Farm Supply in Cortland, N.Y., U.S. Senator Charles Schumer on Tuesday announced legislation designed to help farmers invest in new equipment and collect on the value of their current equipment.
According to Schumer, the current federal tax code is preventing farmers from investing in new equipment. Schumer said if small farmers had better incentives to purchase new farming equipment, those in Cortland County and around New York State would be more inclined to make these costly investments.
The Agriculture Equipment and Machinery Depreciation Act introduced by Schumer would allow farmers to receive the equipment depreciation tax deduction over five years rather than the current period of seven years.
Schumer said under the current Federal Tax Code, if a farmer purchases a tractor for $100,000 it will run effectively for about five years. During that five year period, the tractor would depreciate in value to $30,000.
The $70,000 lost in value can be deducted by the farmers on their taxes. Right now, farmers receive a deduction on their taxes over seven years for the depreciation cost of the equipment.
"So what we have said is, have the depreciation match up with the life of the agricultural machine," Schumer said. "That will increase the amount of depreciation the farmer gets which will decrease their taxes and allow them to buy new equipment sooner."
Schumer hopes to have a vote on the bill by the end of 2015 so it can take effect in the spring of 2016.
The event was covered live by WBNG-TV in New York. Here is a video of their interview with Schumer:
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