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William S. Cohen Papers | Senate Legislative Materials on Fiscal Affairs

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MS Fiscal Affairs 1977-1996 23 boxes

The files in this category are arranged into three groups: a) Banking, 1977-1996, b) Budget, 1981-1996, and c) Taxes, 1981-1995. There is overlap in subject matter among these categories. Records in this subseries include memos, news releases, Cohen's statements, copies of bills, resolutions, and "Dear Colleague" letters.

Banking, 1977-1996, 3 boxes Arranged alphabetically. Files in this category were created by Susan Collins, Eben Adams, Matt Ballard, and Kate Lambrew. The recession of 1991 put banks in New England under considerable stress, and these files record efforts made by the U.S. Congress to assist them. At the same time there were a number of failures of savings and loan institutions, many of which were due to speculative and fraudulent activity. These failures resulted in higher taxes for many, and Cohen introduced S. 955, the State Thrift Deposit Insurance Act of 1991, which was an effort to require those states with a history of excessive S and L losses to pay an added premium in order to continue receiving Federal deposit insurance protection.

Budget, 1981-1996, 9 boxes Arranged chronologically. These files, created by John Veroneau, document efforts made by Cohen and other members of the U.S. Congress to eliminate the federal budget deficit. Attempts to establish a constitutional amendment to balance the budget were made in 1982 and 1986, but Cohen did not support these efforts because he felt that Congress could address the deficit without the aid of a constitutional amendment. In 1992, he supported a balanced budget amendment for the first time, and it was defeated in June of that year. In 1993, he joined three other Senators in a bipartisan effort to reduce the budget deficit through significant spending cuts and fewer tax increases. In 1995, he praised the Budget Reconciliation Act (S. 1357), but was the lone Republican to vote against this bill because he did not feel that the tax cuts it called for should be mixed with efforts to balance the budget. In 1996, he was a member of another bipartisan effort, made up of 22 Senators, to craft a seven-year balanced budget agreement. General files about Maine's economy, including an economic history of Maine written in 1989, are also found here.

Taxes, 1981-1995, 11 boxes Arranged alphabetically. Mary Gerwin handled tax issues from 1981-1984, and John Veroneau handled them until he became legislative director in 1994. Records in this category cover a variety of tax-related subjects, such as President Reagan's 1985 tax reform proposal. The goal of this proposal was to achieve tax simplicity and fairness for all taxpayers, and its effects on different groups, such as small businesses, are discussed. This proposal resulted in the Tax Reform Act (H.R.3838), which was signed into public law in October 1986. Other topics include a 1985 debate on an oil import fee, Cohen's support of a 1989 tax credit for the construction and rehabilitation of low-income housing, and files on luxury, kerosene, gas and corporate taxes.

Access to records in this sub series is restricted until 2017. Consult the Special Collections Department for further information.

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Contact the Cohen Papers: 207.581.2665 | | Revised: 01/05/2015
5729 Fogler Library
University of Maine
Orono, ME 04469-5729
Phone: 207-581-1661 | Fax: 207-581-1653
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The University of Maine
Orono, Maine 04469