Late in the day on Jan. 1, Congress passed legislation that avoids sending the nation’s economy over a “fiscal cliff” as tax cuts expired at the beginning of 2013.

West Virginia University political policy experts are available to offer commentary on the legislation and events surrounding its adoption.

• Associate professor of political science Neil Berch teaches courses in state and local politics, economic policy and economic models of politics. His articles have appeared in American Politics Quarterly, Political Research Quarterly and Southeastern Political Science Review. Contact him by email at or by cell at 412.445.3957.

Jason MacDonald is an associate professor of political science who studies American politics, especially U.S. Congress and bureaucracy. MacDonald’s research examines how Congress addresses policy problems and, in doing so, attempts to maintain power and legitimacy within the U.S. separation of powers system. He has published articles in the American Political Science Review, American Politics Research, Legislative Studies Quarterly, Political Research Quarterly, Public Opinion Quarterly, and other academic journals. For further information on MacDonald, visit his personal website.

He can discuss the basis for congressional decision-making and procedural matters related to consideration of the legislation. MacDonald can be reached at 330.322.8132.

Noel Brock, J.D., is an assistant professor of accounting in WVU’s College of Business and Economics who is an expert in tax law. He earned a law degree from the WVU College of Law in 1996 and was editor-in-chief of The West Virginia Law Review. He received a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Concord College, a master’s degree in Professional Accountancy from WVU and a LL.M. (tax) degree from Georgetown University Law Center. Prior to joining the College of Business and Economics, Mr. Brock worked in international law and was the partnership tax practice leader in Grant Thornton’s Washington National Tax Office. He is a Certified Public Accountant in West Virginia and Washington, D.C., and he is a member of the Bars of California, Washington, D.C., and West Virginia. He has published numerous articles on tax issues and has spoken at national tax conferences. Contact him at or 304.293.7149 .

• Elaine Waterhouse Wilson, a professor of tax law in the WVU College of Law, is also available to offer comment on the issue. Her expertise includes tax-exempt status, structuring compensation packages, non-profit tax planning and compliance, and planned giving strategies. She can be reached at or (304) 293-7802.



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