WOTC Legislation: Call to Action
The legislative authority of the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (“WOTC”) expired on January 1, 2014. The program is currently in a hiatus period and requires reauthorization by act of Congress. Employers can go to WOTCmeansjobs.com, a legislative advocacy site, to send a direct message to their Senator to advocate for a long-term renewal of these important tax provisions. Please visit WOTCmeansjobs.com and click on “Action Center” on the top menu to complete a short form that automatically identifies your Senator and sends them a message stating that a multi-year extension of WOTC is important to the economy and jobs in America.
Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, Dave Camp, recently introduced a bill that would extend WOTC, and other expired tax provisions, but only for one year up to December 31, 2014. This is a good indication that Congress is on board with the need to extend these tax credit programs that employers rely on for their business and tax planning strategies. Unfortunately, the current proposal, H.R. 5771, falls short of the goals of a permanent, or at least longer term extension, as WOTC would go directly back into a hiatus state in less than 30 days from now. It seems likely that the House of Representatives will pass the bill as written, and thus, we are asking all interested parties to contact their Senators to request that they mark up the current proposed bill to include a 2-year or permanent extension of WOTC.
WOTC is a measurable tool for encouraging hiring of those deemed to have barriers to hire. Indeed, there is a relationship between a new hire under the WOTC program and someone who the Department of Labor considers to have barriers to hire, now being gainfully employed. WOTC is a successful and cost-effective private/public sector partnership which provides measurable benefit to offset unemployment. Further, uncertainty in these programs affects employers’ ability to effectively plan hiring and expansion strategies.
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