The House ways and means committee has approved a bill exempting the winnings of Miss Universe 2015 Pia Alonzo Wurtzbach.
House Bill 6367 was proposed by Cagayan de Oro City Rep. Rufus Rodriguez.
Nina Asuncion of the Bureau of Internal Revenue told the congressional panel that Wurtzbach will have the option to pay the taxes in the United States where she will be residing for a year or pay the taxes here in the country once she steps down from her one-year reign at the end of the year.
“The US may tax Pia Wurtzbach on the prizes that she will receive and she will just have to submit documents [to us]as proof of the same [that she paid them in the US],” Asuncion, a lawyer, said.
Among Wurtzbach’s listed prizes for winning the coveted Miss Universe crown are: a year-long salary as Miss Universe; luxury accommodations in a New York City apartment for the duration of her reign, including living expenses; one-year scholarship from the New York Film Academy College of Visual Performing Arts; one-year supply of haircare products and tools from CHI Haircare; new custom diamond tiara and jewelry designed by Diamonds International Corp. (DIC); shoe wardrobe from Chinese Laundry Shoes; swimwear by Yamamay; year’s worth of skincare products from Image Skincare; personal services including membership to Gravity Fitness @ Le Parker Meridien Hotel and hair services from John Barrett Salon; modeling portfolio by leading fashion photographer Fadil Berisha; dermatology and skincare services provided by Dr. Cheryl Thellman-Karcher; professional health and nutrition consultation by Tanya Zuckerbrot; dental services by Dr. Jan Linhart, D.D.S.; professional representation by The Miss Universe Organization; extensive travel representing sponsors and charitable partners; access to various New York City events including casting opportunities, movie premieres, screenings, Broadway shows and launch parties; and personal appearance wardrobe and styling by the official Miss Universe Organization fashion stylist.
The tax exemption for Wurtzbach came ahead of the conferment of the Congressional Medal of Distinction on her–the highest award that the House of Representatives can bestow.
She will be joining the company of future boxing Hall of Famer/eight-time world champion Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao, who was conferred the Congressional Medal of Distinction twice in 2003 and 2010.