Depleting Depletion Allowance 7 :.,, By William J.Scherle If'iflh Dlstrirt Congressman) •,\ When the President vetoed ..Congress's energy bill in i March, he stopped short a ; roll-back in consumer oil .prices. Now, the House Ways and Means Committee is figuring out other ways for /huge petroleum companies to -pay their fair share of the nation's bills by plugging lucrative tax loopholes for oil /conglomerates. • For years, wealthy fossil ..fuel producers have enjoyed a 22'"r write-off for wear and tear and equipment and for exploration risks. If passed, -the new tax would make oil • depletion allowances just history by 1977. A three-year phase-out of the deduction is planned, limiting it to If/'; in '1975. 8 r f in 1976. and reducing it to nothing in the following year. As a result, the I'.S. treasury could collect a hefty $3 billion in additional lax from the oil drillers over a sj-vear neriod. Through this legislation, a heavy tax would be slapped : on exorbitant profits made by petroleum companies since October's oil embargo. An excise tax would be applied in fates from 10 r r to Wr on ex- tfa profits, depending on the size of the windfall gain. Companies will still be allowed to funnel increased profits into stepped-up production and take a tax deduction. jTwo exceptions to the new t|x assessments would take c'fitical shortages of natural gas and existing contracts into account. The natural gas exemption should spur exploration and new production to shore up nitrogen fertilizer voids. The new provision would also allow companies to honor existing long-term contracts which commit them to prices under the old depletion allowance system. Hopefully, this tax measure will be adopted and Congress will be able to plug leaks in the oil companies' tax pipeline. Do you have a bottle of pennies stuck away in some dark corner of your house'? If so, your collection is a source of concern to the federal government. Copper, which constitutes H.Vr of thel* piece, has appreciated in value faster than the penny itself. As a result, the country has more coin collectors than ever before. In an effort to h e a d off hoarding, t h e Treasury Department recently banned the export and melting of pennies. Conviction could bring a maximum penalty of S10.000 and five years in prison. The fine. Times Herald, Carroll, la. _ Tuesday, April 23, 1974 *) presumably, could not be pnid ol't' in pennies. The most pressing concerns of small businesses were revealed in a recent National Federation of Independent Business survey. In the calamitous economic upheaval of 1973, small firms were especially hard-hit — Wr of the businesses queried had experienced a drop in profits from the previous year, while another 40 r r had just remained static in their earnings — meanwhile costs of raw materials continued to surge. Caught between ox- calating costs and consumer cries against price hikes, small businesses identified inflation's turmoil as their number one problem. It has taken all the ingenuity a small enterprise can muster to keep its head above water in this monetary squce/.e. FUNNY BUS/NESS I DOU'T UUOf2R<V, WE'LL. \ \j5tr BETTER BCOKlM6S!J Government is Involved Handling Swedish Press Bowling fly Roger Bo/fen ANOTHER BIRTHDAY? •'Help celebrate with ;.'a Hallmark card. Another persistent concern to small firms, and this holds true for most farmers, is their rate of taxation — small businesses zeroed in on this burden as the second greatest problem confronting them. It was eye-opening that large corporations questioned were only nominally upset by their taxes, placing this issue behind monetary conditions, quality of labor, interest rates, and federal red tape. Small firms are weary of the tax advantages and loopholes granted to their larger competitors. Competition from giant corporations was seen as the third most paralyzing problem in the NFTB study. Small businesses have watched as large entrepreneurs gobbled up trade in many areas, creating near monopolies. Although anti-trust laws were meant to foster free enterprise, more and more firms — small hardware stores, independent gas stations, little jewelers — hav felt the sting of unfair competition. High on the list of small business perils is that of the federal red tape factory. Most onerous of all government torms are the quarterly Social Security and income tax wit h h o 1 d i n g requirements. The notorious IRS form 941 . was estimated by the President's Advisory Council on Management Improvement as costing employers $235 million each year. The additional clerical and accounting costs fall most heavily on small enterprises which inust turn to expensive professional help. Over two full weeks — 100 man-hours — must be allocated by the small businessman to complete federal forms, costing him something between $18 and $50 billion annually. Besides legislation aimed at reducing the overall pile of paperwork on small firms, Congress is considering a bill which would require employers to file Social Security and tax withholding statements for their employees only once a year, rather than quarterly. This would save businesses an estimated $200 million every year. One of the tax relief measures being studied by the Ways and Means Committee would allow small firms to deduct 20 r -r of their taxable earnings up to $40,000 and plow this money back into their businesses. A number of other tax adjustments for small enterprises will be considered by the House within the coming months. Lastly, there is a movement underway in Congress to create a full standing committee for small business affairs. This body would consolidate functions of several splinter select committees and subcommittees dealing with small business woes. Uppermost in the committee's function would be investigation and action against unfair competition. Members of Congress will not allow small business to be pushed over the brink of financial disaster by government bureaucracy and big business. As small businesses bail out from economic hardship, Congress intends to be ready with the net. —By NKA/London Kconomlst News Service STOCKHOLM — During the 1960s, when tabloid journalism boomed, it became clear that the Swedish press council was not effectively discouraging improper practices. Self-discipline was tightened up. In 1969 the council itself was reformed so that half its members came from outside the world of the media; it was empowered to fine offending papers; and the PO was appointed — not by the press alone but by a committee of three consisting of the Parliamentary Ombudsman and the presidents of the bar association and the national press club. The PO himself is not a journalist but a former judge, Lennart Groll. Unlike the other ombudsmen, he has no statutory authority; but aggrieved citizens evidently think it is more worthwhile now to pursue complaints about unethical or sloppy journalism. Before 1969 the council received only about 60 complaints a year; now Groll is getting more than 400 a year from the public, and he also initiates about 20 cases a year himself. He finds about a quarter of the complaints obviously unjustified, and disposes of many others by getting newspapers to publish a correction or a statement by the complainant. In 1972 he thought about 80 cases were worth referring to the council, which is most of these cases censured and fined the offending paper Fines start modestly at $250. but rise with repeated offenses (one Stockholm paper has already paid $7.500 in one year), and all newspapers are pledged to publish the council's censures of them. The press itself enjoys many rights and privileges. The press freedom act'gives the public the right to see all official documents except diplomatic and defense ones. . forbids censorship, and protects the secrecy of journalists' sources. The trend to concentration has been as strong in the press as in other sectors of the Swedish economy. Between 1950 and 1972, 26 dailies died. and many areas have been left with only one local paper. Last year's portents included the death of Gothenburg's venerable Handelstidning; the abandoning of an attempt to launch a Social Democratic morning paper in Stockholm. which has not had one since 1966; andthe further expansion of the big Bonnier group, whose newspapers include Dagens Nyheter. Sweden's foremost daily. Anxiety about loss of diversity in the press has led to some notable actions: Since 1965 each political party has received a subsidy. proportionate to its seats in parliament, which it can use to sustain its newspapers. Since 1969 a state fund has made loans to help the weaker newspapers to face the challenge of stronger ones' ability to finance new technical facilities. Since 1971 a subsidy has been paid to the newspaper with the second largest circulation in each area, while a tax on advertising revenue has penalized the more successful papers. The Social Democrats enthusiasm for "maintaining the free formation of opinion" may be largely explained by the fact that many of their own local papers have come close to extinction, but the outstanding beneficiary from the subsidies to "runners-up" has been Stockholm's conservative Svenska Dagbladet. In sharp contract to the Swedes' eagerness to keep their press diversified is their acceptance of a public radio and television monopoly. Since 1969 this has operated two TV channels, which enjoy a degree of autonomy and produce separate news commentaries; but. although they have sometimes been attacked for plugging the government's line and sometimes for veering far to the left of it, they have been more often criticized for their worthy dullness, and never for revealing a sharp divergence of views on a major issue. The government has long opposed the idea of advertising on TV, but several years ago it agreed to the the appointment of a commission to study the question, which reported in January: seven of its 11 members came out against commercials. Krniil • St.,n Oimill ll.r.ii CiMitrr I'li.-in KiisHli- Tri.i •\l\ Cnnn-i l.iltlr (lus /.eke•-. I'liirr Mnnnn.ills Hrrcl.'l Ki'llll 91'j I'ahst Uluc Itibbon Hinh Ind Single Game— firnr Nicland Ken Stclnknmp [Hive Wcrnimont High Ind Three Games— Louie Timmerman Jerry Starmim John Wittry IliKh Single Game— Monrmans Feed Knsello Trio Tavern Xekes Place High Team Three Games- Center Pharmacy . 199 . 198 187 . 504 . 498 497 . 922 . 917 . 899 .2614 49 Itoselle Trio Tavern 2802 Xekes Place 2589 The usual arguments against them are reinforced in Sweden by the consideration that a switching of advertising to television would hit the newspapers so hard that the maintaining of diversity in the press would become much more costly, and might become impossible; for a press that relied overwhelmingly on state subsidies could present only a facade of independence. And the Swedes have by now invested a lot of public monev in the preservation of controversial journalism. Their talent for political compromise has sometimes been mistaken for a passive uniformity of opinion by people who have not noticed that lively exchanges occur every day in their newspapers. It is all the more important to note how much is being done in Sweden to keep up a healthy amount of public controversy. <- The Economist of London We sell Flynn Dairy Products to your door every day. BERNHOLTZ BROS. Phone 792-4242 Carroll Carroll's Only Home-owned Dairy Distributor Also, we sell Eggs, Meats and Butter PRENGER FURNITURE "Quillty Nim« Br«ndi you Vnow it ilwiyi Low Pric«i." Wt»t on Hwy. 30 — Carroll WAREHOUSE CLEARANCE OF FAMOUS SEALY MATTRESSES REGARDLESS OF PREVIOUS PRICE! the 8" work boot that's most popular in its class Red Wing builds 'em to take the rough stuff. "Sweat-Proof" flexible split leather insoles stay fresh '£- won't crack or curl. Barnyard acid-resistant leather uppers. Stop in — graduate to Red Wings. 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