WASHINGTON—Ohio's two senators, Republican Rob Portman and Democrat Sherrod Brown, have introduced the Work Opportunity Tax Credit & Jobs Act to give permanent status to the Work Opportunity Tax Credit.
The WOTC, set to expire on Dec. 31 if it is not renewed, provides employers a tax credit of between $1,200 and $9,600 for every employee who is hired from designated groups that have a difficult time finding work or often are out of the labor force altogether, according to a press release from Brown's office.
These groups include veterans, the disabled, ex-convicts, the long-term unemployed, summer youth employees, and recipients of various government assistance programs.
"Hard work doesn't pay off like it used to, with too many workers trying but struggling to get ahead," Brown said. "People can and want to contribute to their communities, and they deserve a fair shot. The WOTC provides that opportunity, and awards companies for investing in their greatest asset—the American worker."
The Tire Industry Association, which has long has backed the measure, said it was pleased with the bipartisan support the bill has attracted, with five of the six co-sponsors members of the Senate Finance Committee.
The association urged TIA members to contact Senate Finance members who have leaned toward supporting the WOTC in the past.
"If your headquarters is in their state, or if you have significant operations in their state, by all means reach out to them about WOTC and urge them to co-sponsor the Portman-Brown bill," TIA said.
The House Ways and Means Committee will consider a "tax extenders" bill sometime in April, TIA said, and a stand-alone bill for permanent WOTC status is also a possibility there.