Friday, January 23, 2015

KISS Immigration Solutions Hello by Mark Jason

Almost everyone knows what the acronym KISS stands for (Keep it simple stupid). It was originally coined as a design principle for Lockheed engineers working on jet aircraft for the United States Air Force—with no implicit meaning that an engineer was stupid—just the opposite. The KISS principle states that most systems work best if they are kept simple rather than made complicated. 

The best answers for Immigration Reform are the simplest, and these solutions are a perfect compromise for all involved.

The latest figures indicate that 75% of working undocumented immigrants already pay income taxes using other’s SSNs. This means that we currently have 2 million un-taxable, undocumented, working domestic and service workers.

Congress and the IRS created a flawed Amnesty in 1986 that, if left uncorrected, will doom meaningful future reforms. They didn’t know how to tax this smaller group of immigrants and, in frustration, consented to allow them toestimate their own incomes and file their tax returns as Independent Contractors, resulting in gross underreporting.

The ITIN (Individual Tax Identification Number) system allows undocumented immigrants to file taxes and get tax credits for their “children.” It has been reported repeatedly by the Treasury Inspector General for Tax Administration that this tax is gamed by immigrants in excess of $4.2 billion dollars annually.

Both political parties want tax reform. Why not start with immigrant taxes since they are not only dysfunctional on many levels, but also encourage tax fraud?

Logic and ethics tell us that taxing the poor isn’t beneficial. Immigrants typically don’t risk their lives getting here for our “retirement programs,” so why try to tax them for Social Security and Medicare, or unemployment insurance?

Let’s address American concerns. Our school program budgets are insufficient and we have large classroom sizes. Immigrants jam our emergency rooms and take our jobs. Making “citizenship” part of reform won’t help these issues.  

Of course we have to work on our unsecured borders and restrict illegal immigration, but for those who are working here, we need a tax stratagem that will solve some of the current worries of the American public, stop deportations and offer benefits for immigrants.

An elegant tax is one with which taxpayers solve a problem related to their wellbeing—examples; a bridge tax for islanders or the gas tax designed to maintain our roads. We have a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to have an elegant immigrant tax where employers pay for the public services of their workers.

The report, A Fiscal and Social Model for Immigration Reform, details how if employers of the 2 million cash economy workers (home/restaurant owners, farmers) pay just a 10% labor tax it would create $30 billion over a 10-year period. This could provide enough money to build and staff medical clinics and supplement our school budgets. Compliance and enforcement details are found in the report.

If companies and corporations that hire the 6.5 million undocumented immigrants using false SSNs pay just a 5% tax on labor, another $70 billion would be collected. Page 9 of the report allocates this revenue to nearly two dozen areas of concern Americans have.

 The full report may be read at Originally, the model was designed as a stand-alone project, but has now been revised as a transitional program, flexible enough to mold to current discussions.

 Author Mark Jason, Director of ITIG (Immigrant Tax Inquiry Group), was formerly a Special Agent for the Internal Revenue Service. He has served as a budget analyst to the Chancellor of the California State University System, and has been a consultant for the Mexican government, having lived and attended school there. He has developed a 100-acre honeydew melon farm near Puerta Vallarta, working withand trainingMexican locals. His Immigration Project has been four years in the making. He currently resides in Malibu, California.

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