Articles & Alerts

Grassi Ranked among 30 Largest Accounting Firms by Crain's New York

Grassi was named one of the 30 largest accounting firms in the New York City Area by Crain's New York Business.

Union Trends, Compliance and Cybersecurity Top-of-Mind for New York Contractors

Carl Oliveri, Construction Practice Leader, was published in Construction Executive magazine for his insights into the trends revealed by Grassi’s 2019 Construction Industry Survey.

NJBIZ Manufacturing Panel Explores Hiring, Succession and Legal Issues

Robert Grote, Partner and Manufacturing & Distribution Practice Leader, was featured in NJBIZ for his contributions to the publication’s manufacturing panel discussion on September 24, 2019.

Crain's Names Two Grassi & Co. Principals as Notable Women in Accounting and Consulting

Crain's New York Business has named Elizabeth Gousse Ballotte and Sareena Malik Sawhney to its 2019 Notable Women in Accounting and Consulting list.

Some Contractors Don’t Give Themselves Enough Credit

If you are a specialty contractor responsible for functions such as plumbing, HVAC, electric or sheet metal work, or if you are a contractor that performs value engineering, you may be able to take advantage of some often-overlooked tax incentives.

 

Alert: DOL Expands Retirement Plan Options for Smaller Businesses

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has released a final rule which should make it easier for smaller businesses to provide retirement plans to their employees. According to the DOL, the rule will enable more small and midsize unrelated businesses to join forces in multiple employer plans (MEPs) that provide their employees a defined contribution plan such as a 401(k) plan or a SIMPLE IRA plan. Certain self-employed individuals also can participate in MEPs.
 

Warning to Americans Investing In Certain Canadian Cannabis Stocks That Have A U.S. Presence

You could be (up to) 33% worse off than compared with investing in U.S. stocks because of taxes! Learn the rules on minimizing the additional taxes before you invest.

Alert: MAJOR News For Nonresident Real Estate Holders in the State of CT

In a ruling by the Department of Revenue Services for the State of Connecticut, new tax legislation was recently passed concerning nonresidents owning real estate in Connecticut.
 

CEO Athlete Toolkit to Soften the Blow of the TCJA of 2017

This past tax season was an especially demanding one as it was the first one under the new sweeping tax legislation, the “Tax Cuts and Jobs Act of 2017,” which passed 12/22/2017—professional athletes and coaches felt its impact deeply.
 

Alert: IRS Removes Regulations on Advance Payments for Goods and Long-Term Contracts

On July 15, 2019, the IRS issued final regulations to remove existing regulations regarding advance payments for goods and long-term contracts. These final regulations apply for taxable years ending on or after July 15, 2019 and affect accrual method taxpayers who receive advance payments for goods, including those that may be inventoried.
 

Alert: The Minority and Women Owned Business Enterprise Program Extended!

On June 16, Governor Cuomo reauthorized the Minority and Women Owned Business Enterprises (MWBE) program, due to expire at the end of 2019, for five more years. The reauthorization of the law includes enhancements that will enable even more MWBEs to participate in and benefit from the program.     

Alert: The U.S. Supreme Court Ruled Today that States Cannot Tax Nonresident Trust Payments

Great news for Trusts and Trustees! The Supreme Court in North Carolina ruled today that the state violated the due process clause by taxing an out-of-state trust whose beneficiary was a NC resident— making that the only connection between the state and the trust.
 

Alert: IRS Wheels Out Additional Guidance on Company Cars

The IRS has updated the inflation-adjusted “luxury automobile” limits on certain deductions taxpayers can take for passenger automobiles — including light trucks and vans — used in their businesses. Revenue Procedure 2019-26 includes different limits for purchased automobiles that are and aren’t eligible for bonus first-year depreciation, as well as for leased automobiles.

IRS Updates Rules for Personal Use of Employer-Provided Vehicles

The IRS recently announced the inflation-adjusted maximum value of an employer-provided vehicle under the vehicle cents-per-mile rule and the fleet-average value rule. 

What a Contractor Should Know About the Gross Receipts Test

One of the positives that came out of The Tax Cuts and Job Act is the change in the small contractor’s exemption of Average Annual Gross Receipts (AAGR) test from $10,000,000 to $25,000,000. 

“Style Drift” a Big Problem for Fund Managers, Says SEC Investment Management Division (“SEC”)

It is standard practice for counsel drafting offering documents for investment funds, whether registered with the SEC or not, to describe the fund’s investment strategy.  Failure to describe the strategy would make the fund a type of “dark pool” (investing in a fund vehicle about which the investors are told nothing about what they are investing in).  

How Do Your Profits Erode?

While your inclination is to provide your best, there are certain types of customers who can literally drain your bottom line without you, or them, even realizing it.

Alert: Qualified Opportunity Zones - New Proposed Regulations

The second round of proposed regulations issued on April 17, 2019 provide additional guidance on some of the questions and issues that remained unclear after the initial round of proposed regulations that were issued in October 2018.

Alert: Change to New York State Estate Tax

On Friday April 12, 2019, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed into law the New York Fiscal Year 2020 Budget.  This budget bill includes changes to the NYS Estate Tax Provisions.

Is there a Labor Shortage or Can Your Project Managers Produce More?

Talk of labor shortages in the construction and A&E industries has been public over the last few years. Some say it is likely to continue in 2019 as companies continue to earn higher and higher revenues and maintain healthy and growing backlogs. 

SEC Discovers the Internet

The Division of Investment Management (the “Division”) of the Securities and Exchange Commission (the “SEC”) has stringent requirements for companies that are registered investment advisers (or should be so registered) with respect to client assets.  These rules of long-standing are known as the “Custody Rule,” which provides that it is wrongful conduct for an adviser having custody of client assets to fail to follow the Custody Rule. 

Woman of Distinction

Annie Phillips of Grassi & Co. Hero.

If the Carolina Panthers Move HQ Out of Uptown What Does Charlotte Really Lose?

If the Carolina Panthers move their business operations and practice facilities to South Carolina, Charlotte might lose a little of the luster of being home to an NFL team’s headquarters. You might not spot Cam Newton on South Tryon scootering to practice anymore, either.

Your Company Has a Retirement Plan – Are You Meeting Your Fiduciary Responsibilities?

While you offer your employees defined contribution, defined benefit, health and welfare, or profit sharing plans, it is important to know that offering these plans also comes with responsibilities and risks for the sponsoring company and the trustees of the plans.  

Why Auditors’ Reports Are Likely To Get Longer And More Detailed

Auditors of public companies are required to follow standards set by the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board (the “PCAOB”), created in the wake of the Financial Crisis to improve reporting standards for public companies.  

Alert: Validating Cyber Risks in the Cannabis Industry

With information gathered from assets in the underground (involved with the dark web) and conversations with federal authorities, investigations disclosed that, while there is no specific group actively targeting the cannabis industry, there are hackers focusing on three areas within the Seed to Sale lifecycle: research and extraction; growing; and consumption and retail operations.
 

Alert: How Meals and Snacks Are Valued For Employers Via TAM

On January 18, 2019, Technical Advice Memorandum (TAM) 201903017 was released concluding that an employer cannot treat free employee meals as excludable under Code Section 119 “convenience of the employer” test. 

Alert: What Partnerships and Limited Liability Companies Must Consider Now


Tax legislation enacted in 2015 changed the rules for how partnerships (including limited liability companies and any other entity classified as partnerships) respond to audits by the Internal Revenue Service.  

Push for Scam Techniques Increases

The end of January marks the beginning of the push for some known scam techniques, but there are also some new ones on the scene. Scammers are targeting organizations large and small, as well as individuals, attempting to steal money and/or information. Below are some of the more common scams that are being reported around the world.
 

How To Successfully Implement an ERP System

Choosing the right Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) system is one of the many challenges construction companies face.  Choosing the wrong ERP system can potentially hold a company back, however, the right system can substantially propel a company forward—especially in the areas of cash flow and profitability. 

IRS Waives 2018 Underpayment Tax Penalties for Many Taxpayers

The IRS has some good news for certain taxpayers — it’s waiving underpayment penalties for those whose 2018 federal income tax withholding and estimated tax payments came in under their actual tax liabilities for the year.

Alert: Important Tax Update on QBI and Trusts

The Tax Cut & Jobs Act of 2017 provided a new Section 199A deduction on qualified business income for certain pass through entities (sole proprietorships, partnerships & S corps). This deduction, which is generally 20% of QBI with certain limitations, is temporary and expires at the end of tax year 2025.
 

Using Deferred Cash Bonus to Retain Employees

One issue plaguing the construction industry revolves around a labor shortage.  This has been a hot topic the last few years and is likely to continue in 2019 as companies continue to earn higher and higher revenues and maintain healthy and growing backlogs.  

Great News for NJ Construction? Maybe.

The New Jersey construction community received a New Year’s gift at the end of December: an announcement from the Murphy administration adding over $400 million in new projects currently under design, as well as accelerating its first quarter 2019 construction program, giving much promise to 2019!  

Alert: Highlights of NYS Personal Income Tax Changes

New York State has decided to decouple from the Federal Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) certain personal income tax changes for tax years 2018 and after.  

EAlert: Business Meals and Entertainment Deductions

Many businesses still have questions regarding meal and entertainment expenses for 2018. The IRS recently amended IRC Sec. 274, relating to deductibility of business meals, eliminating deductions with respect to most entertainment, amusement or recreational activities.

EAlert: Important Policy Update for NFPs

New Policy updates for Not-For-Profits—What does this mean for you?

EAlert: Critical Tax Points for Funds, Their Managers and Investors

The impact of 2017’s Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (the “New Law”) on funds, their managers and investors is hard to understate.  In this executive summary of year-end tax issues to consider, we highlight issues for your consideration.  

Implications of the New Tax Law for LI Contractors

Tax projection season is upon us and is a completely new ballgame!  The Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (“TCJA”) was adopted at the end of 2017 with most of it effective January 1, 2018.  

EAlert: Proposed Regulations on Qualified Opportunity Zones

On October 19, 2018 the Treasury and IRS issued proposed regulations on the new Opportunity Zone Tax incentive created by the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) encouraging economic growth and development through private investment in specific low-income or rural communities and disaster areas. 

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