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COMMITTEE ON WAYS AND MEANS
ONE HUNDRED THIRD CONGRESS
JANICE MAYS, Chief Counsel and Staff Director
This document was prepared by the majority staff of the Committee on Ways and Means and is issued under the authority of Chairman Dan Rostenkowski. This document has not been reviewed or officially approved by the Members of the Committee.
LETTER OF TRANSMITTAL
HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES, COMMITTEE ON WAYS AND MEANS, Washington, D.C., June 14, 1993.
The Honorable DAN ROSTENKOWSKI,
DEAR MR. CHAIRMAN: Upon your election as Chairman of the Committee on Ways and Means in 1981, you instructed the staff to prepare a resource document on programs within the Committee's jurisdiction. That year and annually since, the Committee has published the "Overview of Entitlement Programs," which presents background material and statistical data on Social Security, Medicare, trade adjustment assistance, unemployment compensation, Aid for Dependent Children, child support enforcement, Supplemental Security Income, the Title XX social services block grant program, child welfare, foster care, and adoption assistance. In 1987 and every other year thereafter, the Committee has published a trade resource document, "Overview and Compilation of U.S. Trade Statutes," which provides background material on the principal trade authorities within the Committee's jurisdiction. While initially intended for the use of the Members of the Committee and their staffs, these documents have become valuable resources for Members of Congress, Congressional staff, government officials at the Federal, State and local level, interested parties in the international trade community, academicians, public policy analysts, as well as the general public.
Since 1990, the Committee has published a third resource document, "Overview of the Federal Tax System," which presents background material and statistical data on the Federal tax system, thus completing your original mandate issued in 1981. On behalf of the staff, I am pleased to transmit to you and the other Members of the Committee on Ways and Means, the 1993 edition of the "Tax Green Book." This document was prepared by the Committee's staff with assistance from the staffs of the Joint Committee on Taxation, the Internal Revenue Service, the Congressional Research Service of the Library of Congress, the Congressional Budget Office, and the General Accounting Office. The staff wishes to express its appreciation to the many individuals who contributed to the publication of this document. The tax overview is intended to complement the published overviews of trade and entitlement programs within the Committee's jurisdiction. As with these other publications, it is the staff's intention to republish this document periodically to update the analytical material and statistical data presented herein.
Suggestions by Members of Congress or other interested persons on how to improve this document as a resource tool would be welcomed and reflected in subsequent editions of this publication.
This document has been prepared for the use of the Committee on Ways and Means by its staff with the assistance of the staffs of the Joint Committee on Taxation, the Congressional Research Service, the Congressional Budget Office, the Internal Revenue Service, and the General Accounting Office. The purpose of this publication is to outline the fundamentals of the Federal tax system. It is designed to be used as a sourcebook by Members of Congress, their staffs, and others who seek basic information about Federal taxes. The book is divided into ten parts.
Part I provides an overview of Federal taxes and trends in the resulting revenue collections.
Part II provides a description of the legal and institutional structure underlying the Federal tax system. It explores the constitutional sources of Federal taxing power, as well as the role of each of the three branches of government-legislative, executive, and judicial-in developing Federal tax law. As part of its description of the role of the legislative branch, Part II outlines the jurisdictional prerogatives of the Committee on Ways and Means with respect to revenue-raising bills.
Part III provides a list of sources for further information concerning the Federal tax system for Members of Congress, staff, and others who wish more information.
Part IV summarizes the essential features of the Federal tax system.
Part V includes historical tables showing the growth and the change in composition of Federal receipts over time.
Part VI provides an overview of Federal tax expenditures.
Part VII summarizes the legislative histories of Federal tax legislation enacted since 1981 and provides other historical data.
Part VIII is Internal Revenue Service Publication No. 1: "Your Rights as a Taxpayer." This publication summarizes the administrative and judicial avenues open to the taxpayer who wishes to dispute a tax assessment.
Part IX is a Joint Committee on Taxation list of recently expired tax provisions.
Part X presents information on the distribution of income and taxes.
This publication is intended to serve as a source of information about the Federal tax system. The exclusion of an item from this book carries no inference with respect to the Committee's jurisdiction over that item.