Important information today from Paul Suplizio President of the WOTC Coalition. As I mentioned yesterday, Senate Democrats hope to pass the veterans- and WOTC- related provisions of President Obama’s jobs bill this week as an amendment to a bill recently passed by the House with significant bipartisan support.
Today, Senator Majority Leader Harry Reid announced he would support bringing the measure to the Senate floor for a vote. He hopes to win sufficient bipartisan support to pass it by Veterans Day (this Friday).
Contacting Republican Congressional Leaders Will Be Key
Let me quote directly Mr. Suplizio.
Whether [this bill] passes will be mostly up to Republican leaders, as most rank and file Republicans are waiting for their leaders to move. We have contacted Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and [House] Speaker John Boehner and urge veterans organizations and Coalition members with connection to these leaders through Kentucky or Ohio to reinforce the point by writing a brief line:
“As Veterans Day approaches, we trust you will lead in urging Congress to acknowledge again the nation’s debt to those who have defended our liberties in armed conflict by according them the finest assistance possible in obtaining work when they return home. Please pass the VOW to Hire Heroes Act of 2011 as soon as possible.”
Key Provisions as outlined by Senate Democrats (Notice that the first three bullet points below are specific to WOTC):
* Tax credit of up to $5,600 for hiring veterans who have been looking for a job for more than six months
* Tax credit of up to $2,400 credit for hiring veterans who are unemployed for more than 4 weeks, but less than 6 months
* Tax credit of up to $9,600 for hiring veterans with service-connected disabilities who have been looking for a job for more than six months
* Makes the Transition Assistance Program (TAP)—an interagency workshop coordinated by Departments of Defense, Labor and Veterans Affairs—mandatory for service members moving on to civilian life to help them secure 21st Century jobs through resume writing workshops and career counseling
* Expands education and training opportunities for older veterans by providing 100,000 unemployed veterans of past eras and wars with up to 1-year of additional Montgomery GI benefits to go towards education or training programs at community colleges or technical schools
* Provides disabled veterans up to 1-year of additional Vocational Rehabilitation and Employment Benefits
* Allows service members to begin the federal employment process prior to separation in order to facilitate a truly seamless transition from the military to jobs at VA, Homeland Security, or the many other federal agencies in need of our veterans