On October 1, the Senate passed a revised version of legislation authorizing the Treasury Department’s Troubled Asset Relief Program (TARP), and sent it back to the House of Representatives. The core of the original TARP legislation remains essentially unchanged, but additions have been made to the bill in an attempt to ensure its passage.
The bill now includes the Energy Improvement and Extension Act of 2008, which, among other things, provides tax credits and incentives to the alternative energy industry. Also included is a tax extenders package that extends relief from the alternative minimum tax, as well as individual and business tax deductions and research-and-development tax credits. The Senate also added a provision that would place mental illness on a par with physical illness for insurance purposes. Finally, the bill increases the deposit insurance offered by the Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. from $100,000 to $250,000, and creates unlimited authority in the FDIC to borrow taxpayer money to support the higher coverage.