The Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC) has received a lot of attention from legislators this year. A report recently released by the Senate Finance Committee’s Employment and Community Development Taskforce outlined a total of 16 bills, all introduced in the current Congress. Each would either expand, increase, or extend the WOTC program.
Yesterday, Senator Corry Booker (D, NJ) and Representatives Bonnie Watson Coleman (D-NJ), and Ilhan Omar (D-MN) introduced yet another bill. More correctly, the Federal Jobs Guarantee Development Act was re-introduced yesterday, since Senator Booker originally presented this bill to the previous Congress on April 25, 2018.
Guaranteed Jobs & Expanded WOTC
This bill would establish a 3-year pilot program under the Department of Labor to provide “guaranteed jobs” and income in 15 designated high-unemployment communities. Section 2(L) of the bill would expand WOTC to include a new target group, the “Qualified Participant in a Job Guarantee Program.”
A “qualified participant” is defined as someone who participated in a job guarantee program for at least 3 months during the 6-month period ending on their hire date with their new employer.
I find this proposal as a whole to be objectionable. Yet, it is encouraging to see so much legislative interest in the potential usefulness of the WOTC program.