New bill would give tax breaks for training employees not to spread coronavirus

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Rep. Pete Olson, a Republican from Texas, has introduced a bill that would offer tax incentives to employers who train workers about best practices for reducing the spread of COVID-19 in the workplace.

H.R. 8260, The Businesses Preparing for a Better Tomorrow Act, would provide a payroll tax credit for expenses used for qualified workplace best practices training associated with protecting employees from COVID-19. Qualified workplace training expenses would be defined as amounts paid or incurred by the employer for education and training with respect to industry best practices and recommendations made by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, with the primary purpose of preventing the spread of COVID-19.

“The COVID-19 global pandemic has devastated our economy and hurt Americans through no fault of their own,” Olson said in a statement Wednesday. “I’m proud to help businesses protect their employees and customers. The Businesses Preparing for a Better Tomorrow Act will not only provide tax incentives to companies who train their employees in healthy workplace practices, but also create jobs. As job creators across Texas and America continue to struggle to survive, this tax credit provides help that is vital to getting our economy back up and running. I appreciate the strong support from organizations across the business spectrum for these incentives to help businesses protect their employees during this pandemic.”

The bill has received support from several business trade groups representing the cleaning industry; plumbing, heating and cooling contractors; and safety equipment makers.

“We are facing historic safety and health challenges as Americans return to the workplace, and we must ensure they have the proper training for this new reality,” said International Safety Equipment Association president Charles Johnson in a statement. “That’s why ISEA supports Olson’s bill, which will help employers offset some of these new and unexpected training expenses. America’s workforce should have the proper training and equipment to ensure the workplace is as safe from COVID-19 as possible.”

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Finance, investment and tax-related legislation Tax credits Payroll taxes Coronavirus Tax breaks