As far as I know, no one has seen the nitty gritty of President Obama’s jobs proposal (as outlined in yesterdays speech), because legislation to implement the proposals has not yet been offered. According to articles published after the speech in the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and San Francisco Chronicle, we do have estimates of the dollar amounts involved.
The plan in total is worth about $447 billion. Tax cuts make up $245 billion of that, meaning actual spending proposed comes to about $200 billion.
Here’s a summary from the San Francisco Chronicle.
Employers: Payroll taxes would be cut in half for small employers in the next year and would be waived if employers create new jobs or raise their employees’ wages.
Workers: The 2 percent payroll tax cut for workers, approved in 2009, would be raised to 3.1 percent, cutting employee payroll taxes a total of 50 percent for an estimated 160 million American families.
Infrastructure: The federal government would spend more than $100 billion on infrastructure projects such as roads, bridges and high-speed rail.
Schools: The plan allocates $30 billion to upgrade 35,000 schools, plus $10 billion to establish an “infrastructure bank” to help finance local projects.
Jobless benefits: Long-term unemployment benefits would be extended and the program revamped to allow out-of-work Americans to earn pay for up to nine weeks of job training.
Rehiring: States and local governments would receive $35 billion to rehire laid-off teachers and first responders.
Hiring: Businesses would receive tax credits to hire long-term unemployed people
Missing from this description is any mention of the Work Opportunity Tax Credit; however, if my memory serves me, President Obama’s speech did mention tax credits for hiring military veterans – a clear allusion to his previous touted Returning Heroes and Wounded Warrior Tax Credits. And that, of course, is an augmentation of existing credits offered through WOTC.
Given the current climate in Washington, I’m not certain if support from President Obama is helpful or harmful to the goal of extending hiring tax breaks like the WOTC program.