September 14, 2021

Cortez Masto Introduces Bipartisan Legislation to Help Nevadans Recover From Natural Disasters

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) introduced bipartisan legislation Senators John Kennedy (R-La.) and Chris Van Hollen (D-Md.) to provide relief for impacted taxpayers in states that have issued state-level disaster declarations. Currently, the IRS has the authority to postpone filing deadlines in the event of a presidentially-declared federal disaster, but this does not extend to state-level emergencies.

This summer, Nevada has declared state-level emergencies for both the Tamarack and the Caldor Fires, which have displaced thousands of Nevada families, pulled significant resources from Nevada’s firefighters, and impacted Nevada’s economy. Under current law, Nevadans are not eligible for any tax relief for these state disaster declarations. Senator Cortez Masto’s legislation would ensure that Nevada and all states are treated fairly and get the support they need to recover from wildfires and other natural disasters.

“Nevadans shouldn’t be denied tax relief after experiencing wildfires just because the state doesn’t receive a federally recognized disaster declaration,” said Senator Cortez Masto. “Nevadans across the state have been affected by major wildfires in the west, and my legislation would ensure that any taxpayer feeling the impact of a natural disaster can access vital tax relief so our communities are able to recover.”   

“It seems like Louisianians have been hit with all the storms nature has to offer, and we need all the help we can get to recover, and that includes extensions for filing taxes,” said Senator Kennedy. “Since Louisiana can’t always rely on Washington to get us the relief we need when we need it, this bill would make sure that Louisianians get the tax extensions necessary for rebuilding after our state declares a natural disaster. I’m thankful to partner with Sen. Cortez Masto on this effort.”

“When disaster strikes, Marylanders need immediate financial flexibility to rebuild and recover. This legislation will help ensure that – even when a federal disaster has not been declared. I’ll be working with my colleagues to pass this common-sense, bipartisan bill,” said Senator Van Hollen.

The Filing Relief for Natural Disasters Act would allow the governor of a state or territory to extend a federal tax filing deadline in the event of a state-declared emergency or disaster, which happens automatically for federally-declared disasters. Extending this authority to states gives them the ability to provide relief independent of the federal government’s involvement in an emergency or natural disaster. Also, the legislation would expand the mandatory federal filing extension from 60 days to 120 days. This bill is supported by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA).