What Will the Senate Tax Bill Do to Graduate Students?

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East Lansing, Mich. – In a series of shocking twists and turns, Senate Republicans were able to pass their tax bill, their first legislative victory of the year.

The Senate Tax bill calls for a mass overhaul of the American tax code. Everything from tax brackets, health care to graduate student loan rates were touched upon.

Graduate students will now be taxed on their income made from teaching or research completed for their respective universities as well as the money the university pays for their education in exchange for their work.

Michigan State College Democrats’ Press Secretary Eli Pales explains how this works.

“For example, a grad student makes $15,000 a year, then that is what they are currently taxed on. And they might have free tuition, that something a lot of them get, so they might have $40,000 in free tuition and $15,000 in salary for teaching classes, etc. What this tax plan does is turn that grant money into income money. So, even though they only have $15,000 of income, this bill will count as them having $55,000 of income, with their $40,000 tuition credit. And this dramatically increases their taxes. Estimates show that graduate students are going to see increases of about $3,000.”

Michigan State College Republicans agree with Pales that they don’t believe this portion of the bill should be in it.

“I will say that, we, College Republicans, do not agree with this portion of the bill,” says College Republicans Director of Social Events Derek Hackett.

But while they don’t agree with the bill, the organization does believe this bill will do more good than harm.

” [This bill] does a lot of things with deductions, it’s wide sweeping, but I think the entire mission of the bill overall, although some aspects like graduate school tuition waivers and stuff like that, the overall goal of the bill is to make government more efficient which is incredibly important. It simplifies it and makes it so that our complex tax brackets and our endless series of deductions are able to be simplified into something that works for all Americans.”

The bill, which has passed through the Senate, will now be meshed together with the House Republicans bill. The two groups will work together to come up with a cohesive bill that satisfies both groups.

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