This week, bipartisan legislation was introduced to restore parity between private and public sector employers regarding eligibility for payroll tax credits to alleviate the costs of paid leave during the coronavirus pandemic. ASCE supports the Supporting State and Local Leaders Act, which was introduced by Rep. Schneider (D-IL), Rep. Katko (R-NY), Rep. Cox (D-CA), Rep. King (R-NY), Rep. DeGette (D-CO), and an additional 103 bipartisan Members of Congress. Late last month, ASCE signed onto a coalition letter of support with this same request.
Public sector employees are those who are on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic, including civil engineers working to provide safe and accessible drinking water and properly treated wastewater, among many other essential infrastructure workers. Currently, public sector employers are prohibited from receiving a payroll tax credit to offset the cost of paid sick and family leave to employees affected by the coronavirus.
As a result of the pandemic, state and local governments are experiencing reduced tax revenues, which undermines their ability to provide the critical services needed to successfully combat the disease in their communities. This legislation would provide much needed assistance to state and local governments by making them eligible for the same paid sick leave payroll tax credit as the private sector.
ASCE is pleased at the enormous bipartisan support of this bill and will continue to advocate for its passage in the next COVID-19 relief package.