Farmers in Iowa and around the country have a lot at stake as Congress pivots away from health care and begins to focus on reforming the nation’s tax code, an American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) tax specialist said last week.

Farmers would see significant benefits if Congress revised the current federal income tax system to be fairer and more equitable, said Pat Wolff, AFBF senior director of congressional relations. There appears to be growing momentum to permanently end the estate tax, or death tax, and to reduce capital gains taxes, she said.

At the same time, Wolff cautioned, farmers and their representatives in Congress must work to protect key tax tools used by agriculture. Many of those could be targeted as lawmakers work to reform the complex tax system, she said.

Lower tax burden goal

"At the end of the day, we want farmers to have a lower tax burden in the future than they have today," Wolff said. "That will...