WASHINGTON, D.C. — Most coin laundry owners are probably aware of the recently approved economic stimulus package, which is centered on rebates of $600 to $1,200 for more than 130 million households. In addition, this package contains two provisions aimed at helping small businesses increase their capital spending: a huge increase in the Section 179 tax deduction and a bonus depreciation allowance.
The Section 179 deduction, which allows small businesses to deduct upfront rather than depreciate over time the costs of certain kinds of equipment, has nearly doubled for 2008, rising to $250,000 from a previously planned $128,000. The bonus depreciation provision allows businesses of any size to depreciate 50% of the cost of equipment, with the balance to be depreciated according to IRS rules.
More specifically, the Section 179 deduction applies to companies that buy less than $800,000 in capital equipment during the year. Not all kinds of equipment can be deducted under Section 179. Typically, computers, vehicles, manufacturing equipment and office furniture qualify for the deduction. Air conditioning or heating units, for example, cannot be fully deducted under Section 179 — but they can be deducted under depreciation rules.
Equipment must be bought — not necessarily paid for — and placed in service by Dec. 31 to qualify for the deduction.
The bonus depreciation allowance gives business owners a larger than usual first-year deduction for capital equipment.
Coin laundry operators should consult with their accountants to get a full understanding of these two provisions.