Areas of ExpertiseFederal Tax and Budget Policy Corporate Tax
Steve is ITEP’s director of federal tax policy. In this role, he is responsible for setting the organization’s federal research and policy agenda. He is the author of numerous reports and analyses of federal tax policies as well as in-depth policy briefs that outline how the federal income tax and corporate tax code can be overhauled to improve tax fairness.
Just before taking on the role of ITEP’s director of federal tax policy, Steve spent more than two years as the senior tax policy analyst for Sen. Bernie Sanders and as a member of the senator’s Budget Committee staff. In this capacity, he wrote legislation related to personal income and corporate income taxes, financial transaction taxes, estate taxes and tax avoidance.
Before joining Sen. Sanders’ staff, Steve had previously worked for ITEP and its c(4) partner Citizens for Tax Justice for more than eight years. During this time, he built expertise is analyzing tax policies and their effect on federal revenue as well as on people across the income spectrum. Notably, he wrote reports on proposals to extend the George W. Bush tax cuts, as well as proposals to eliminate tax breaks for for investors and corporations as a way of financing health care reform and other initiatives.
Earlier in his career, Steve worked for the Social Security Administration’s Office of Policy and the Coalition on Human Needs. He received a Juris Doctor and Master’s in Public Policy from Georgetown University and a bachelor’s from New York University.steve at itep.org
Recent Publications and Posts view more
It is well known that the bulk of the federal tax cuts flowed to the highest-earning households, who received the largest tax cut both in terms of real dollars and also as a share of income. But as our analysis with Prosperity Now reveals, solely examining the tax law in the context of class misses a bigger-picture story about how the nation’s public policies not only perpetuate widening income and wealth inequality, they also preserve historic and current injustices that continue to allow white communities to build wealth while denying the same level of opportunity (and often suppressing it) to communities of color.
On Monday a group of Senators and Representatives from the Northeast announced their latest proposal to repeal the cap on deductions for state and local taxes (SALT), this time offsetting the costs by restoring the top personal income tax rate to 39.6 percent. This is an improvement over previous proposals to repeal the cap on SALT deductions without offsetting the costs at all. But the new approach does not improve our tax system overall. Instead, it trades one tax cut for the rich (a lower top income tax rate) for another (repeal of the cap on SALT deductions).
Media Mentions view more
New York Observer: Amazon Paid $0 in Federal Taxes Despite Making $11 Billion in 2018—And No One Knows Why
You may feel like a champion financial planner after filing last year’s income taxes, even though you did pay a…
“It’s hard to know exactly what they’re doing,” said Steve Wamhoff, ITEP’s Director of Federal Tax Policy. “In their public documents they don’t lay out their tax strategy. So it’s unclear exactly which breaks [the company is taking advantage of]. They vaguely say tax credits. One could think of many different ways a corporation could do this, like the depreciation breaks which were expanded under TCJA.”