The Senate Finance Committee released the first 3 of 6 reports investigating the status and future of numerous federal tax incentive programs.
According to an article published by Bloomberg on Tuesday, “Two of the reports released, on energy and individual tax provisions, didn’t reach definitive conclusions, indicating either weak support or divided opinion for some of those provisions.”
What About WOTC?
The report most interesting to us, however, comes from the task force focused on employment and community development.
That report has not yet been published.
However, Senator Rob Portman (R-Ohio) stated that the task force preparing that report has reached a consensus about the future of the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC). According to Bloomberg, Senator Portman “demurred on giving further details”, however, “so as not to get out ahead of the committee’s publication of the report.”
Senator Portman is the Republican lead of this task force. That gives his observations some weight. His statement that a consensus has been reached is foretelling.
Hopefully, we can assume that Senator Portman maintained his historical view about WOTC as he deliberated within his task force. Senator Portman is the chief proponent of the Work Opportunity Tax Credit & Jobs Act of 2019. That bill would make the WOTC program permanent and he introduced it to the Senate on April 2 of this year.
At that time, he stated:
“Our economy is creating jobs and increasing wages, and that’s good news, but we have much more work ahead…. Encouraging employers to hire those who have the most trouble finding work is good policy, and that’s why we should make the Work Opportunity Tax Credit permanent.”
A Reasonable Prediction
We don’t know yet but . . . if Senator Portman continued to champion these views within his task force and that task force has truly reached a consensus, we can then reasonably conclude they will recommend adopting WOTC as a permanent feature of the U.S. tax code. And if not, then at least to extend it beyond 2019.