Graduate students face tax hikes under House tax plan

Graduate students face tax hikes under House tax plan

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

The tax proposal from Republicans in the House have many graduate students worried. 

The plan would make the tuition waivers many graduate students rely on taxable income. For students like Henry Yew, it would cause his taxes to spike.

"Even with the standard deduction being doubled under the House bill my income taxes would increase by about $1,200 to $1,500 a year," Yew said. That is nearly a 50 percent increase.

A number of grad students would be in similar shoes as Yew. Around 145,000 grad students received a tuition reduction in the 2011, 2012 school year according to the American Council on Education. That means if the plan is passed, students could see billions of dollars of increases in taxes.

"The last thing we want to do is to spend endless nights trying to balance our budgets trying to see what expenses I can cut," Yew said. "I mean I don't have Netflix, I don't have an AT&T or Verizon subscription because I think it's just too expensive. I'm even considering cutting off my Amazon Prime subscription and all of these are an attempt to make sure that I can live off what I make." 

The Republican tax plans have a number of hurdles to clear before it can become law. The Senate must pass its version then the two chambers will come together in conference to reconcile the differences. 

Currently the Senate version does not include language that would affect grad students.

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