(Updates with response from Finance Committee spokeswoman and Senate vote)
By Martin Vaughan
Of DOW JONES NEWSWIRES
WASHINGTON -(Dow Jones)- U.S. Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus ( D., Mont.) has removed a controversial proposal that would force lawyers, accountants and other professionals to pay more in payroll taxes from a broader proposal to extend expired tax cuts.
The payroll tax provision, which would have raised $9 billion to help pay for tax cut extensions, had drawn strong criticism from business advocacy groups and Republicans including Sen. Olympia Snowe (R., Maine).
An email from Senate Finance Committee staff, obtained by Dow Jones Newswires, outlined several changes to an amendment Baucus planned to offer to small- business legislation pending on the Senate floor.
Among those changes was the elimination of the small business payroll tax provision. A Senate Finance Committee spokeswoman said plans for the amendment were still under discussion. She said she couldn’t comment at this time on whether the proposal has been shelved indefinitely.