The House Budget Committee yesterday was on the verge of approving a $1.014 trillion spending blue print for fiscal 2009, including a $70 billion provision to shield 30 million new taxpayers from having to pay the alternative minimum tax for the 2008 tax year and a tax credit for qualified school-construction bonds.

The AMT, which applies to interest earned on private-activity bonds and some governmental and 501(c)(3) bonds, is designed to target high-income households, which are eligible for so many tax breaks they pay little or no taxes. However, the AMT is not indexed to inflation so more taxpayers become subject to it each year. Congress late last year approved AMT relief for the 2007 tax year.

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