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Notre Dame to pay millions under tax reform bill

December 20, 2017

A University of Notre Dame spokesman says the sweeping rewrite of the nation's tax laws that Congress has approved would cost the university up to $9 million per year.

The Republican-backed legislation calls for the university and other private colleges with at least $500,000 in endowment per student to pay a 1.4 percent annual tax on those earnings, The South Bend Tribune reported.

Public colleges and universities would be exempt from the provision included in the tax bill.

Notre Dame spokesman Paul Browne said that the provision would likely cost Notre Dame $6 million to $9 million per year. He said the university spends a portion of its annual endowment on scholarships, faculty positions and student aid.

Terry Hartle, senior vice president of the trade group American Council on Education, opposed the bill.

"An excise tax on the endowments of some private colleges and universities, regardless of how many or how few institutions it affects, is a remarkably bad idea that takes money that would otherwise be used for student aid, research, and faculty salaries and sends it to the Department of the Treasury to finance corporate tax cuts."

Hartle said the change to the standard deduction would also reduce charitable deductions, which likely would result in loss of charitable gifts to colleges.

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