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United States Department of State / Foreign relations of the United States diplomatic papers, 1937. General
(1937)

Tax exemption and customs courtesies enjoyed by foreign diplomatic and consular officers in the United States,   pp. 991-994 PDF (1.5 MB)


Page 992


992           FOREIGN RELATIONS, 1937, VOLUME I
  It is understood that some foreign governments levy a transmission
tax on transportation. Sections 500 of the Revenue Acts of 1917 and
1918 a imposed a similar tax on transportation charges. Article 99
of Treasury Regulations 49, relating to such tax provided that am-
bassadors, ministers and properly accredited diplomatic representa-
tives of any foreign government to the United States were exempt
from the payment of the taxes on amounts paid for transportation
services rendered them within the United States. Such tax was re-
pealed as of December 31, 1921.4 Therefore, at the present time there
is no Federal tax on transportation charges similar to the transmission
tax mentioned.
  In the District of Columbia there is no charge corresponding to
rates payable by a tenant, and consequently diplomatic officers in
Washington are not obliged to pay rates.
  Property in the District of Columbia owned by foreign governments
for Embassy and Legation purposes is exempt from general and
special taxes or assessments. Property owned by an Ambassador
or Minister and used for Embassy or Legation purposes is exempt from
general taxes but not from special assessments for improvements. The
payment of water rent is required in all cases, as this is not regarded
as a tax but the sale of a commodity.
  The President approved on August 27, 1935, H. R. 7998,5 entitled
"An Act to exempt from taxation official compensation of certain for-
eign representatives . . .", the pertinent portion of which reads as
follows:
  "Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives of the
United States of America in Congress assembled, That section 116 of
the Revenue Act of 1934 6f relating to exclusions from gross income is
amended by adding at the end thereof a new subsection reading as
follows:
'(I) Compensation of Employees of Foreign Governments.-Wages, fees, or
salary of an employee of a foreign government (including a consular or other
officer, or a nondiplomatic representative) received as compensation for
official
services to such government-
   '(1) If such employee is not a citizen of the United States; and
   '(2) If the services are of a character similar to those performed by
em-
 ployees of the Government of the United States in foreign countries; and
   '(3) If the foreign government whose employee is claiming exemption grants
 an equivalent exemption to employees of the Government of the United States
 performing similar services in such foreign country.
 'The Secretary of State shall certify to the Secretary of the Treasury the
names
 of the foreign countries which grant an equivalent exemption to the employees
of
 the Government of the United States performing services in such foreign
coun-
 tries, and the character of the services performed by employees of the Government
 of the United States in foreign countries."'
 '40 Stat. 300 and 1057, respectively.
 4 Revenue Act of 1921; 42 Stat. 227, 320.
 a49 Stat. 908.
 *48 Stat. 680.


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