As the hotly contested campaign raged, business leaders waited. They did not want to hire or expand their businesses in the face of a possible recession. Most companies have incorporated the fiscal cliff scenario into their operational plans. Uncertainty about the outcome has kept economic growth too slow to reduce unemployment. It is more important than ever that policy makers return to negotiations that will be based on the terms of this agreement and on the reduction of spending in the Budgetary Control Act. These future negotiations must make our ambition programs sustainable and solvent and reform our tax code to encourage growth and generate revenue. We accept some encouragement from the president and congressional leaders that they recognize the need for more work. To reach an agreement, it will be absolutely necessary for both sides to go beyond their comfort zone and reach an agreement in principle on a global plan that puts the debt on a clear downward trajectory relative to the economy. The inability to adopt a comprehensive fiscal plan that intelligently puts debt on a downward trajectory as a share of the economy has led to a series of mini-pitfalls that are constantly resurfacing. Some of these “Fiscal Speed Bumps” met at the end of 2015. Congress has struggled to approve long-term funding for surface transportation projects. In addition, the Highway Trust (HTF) fund faces bottlenecks because gas tax revenues have not been sufficient. Sustainable infrastructure financing is essential.
Funding for motorways was extended by five years in December, but the agreement will leave a significant deficit in the HTF in the future. The fiscal cliff is over. But the era of cliffs has only just begun. GoP`s heads of state and government said they were willing to accept more government revenue – by limiting tax deductions and closing loopholes – but stressed that they were not willing to increase individual rates. However, some analysts speculate that a letter from the Business Roundtable, a coalition of Fortune 500 executives, to Congress in December could offer Republicans some political coverage in this regard. “The compromises [on the fiscal cliff] will force Congress to agree on an increase in revenue, whether it`s raising tax rates, removing deductions or combining them,” he said. Economists believe that a prudent compromise would involve an extension of some current provisions, either indefinitely or at least temporarily, to avoid under-eding of economic growth. More importantly, policymakers should develop a credible plan to achieve the necessary amount of medium- and long-term fiscal consolidation that stabilizes public debt. According to the IMF`s October fiscal monitor, “medium-term consolidation must include tariff reform, which is the main driver of long-term spending, but it must also increase revenues given the size of the deficit and the relatively low tax rate.” Several sources have assessed the impact of the tax increases on taxpayers, which would have occurred if Bush`s income tax cuts and Obama`s payroll tax cut were on the fiscal cliff. The table below shows the increase in income tax in dollars and percentage for fiscal year 2013, when the fiscal cliff came into effect.  The new fiscal year began on October 1 without a new state of spending, but a number of short-term shutdowns avoided a government shutdown.