MAXIMUS appreciates the opportunity to submit testimony for consideration by the Committee on Veterans’ Affairs as it reviews the implementation of the VOW to Hire Heroes Act.
For nearly forty years, MAXIMUS has partnered with state, federal, and local governments to provide health and human service programs to a diverse array of communities. Since 1978, MAXIMUS has helped companies process eligible new hires through the Targeted Jobs Tax Credit Program, now the Work Opportunity Tax Credit Program (WOTC).
As you know, in late 2011, Congress passed The Veterans Opportunity to Work (VOW) to Hire Heroes Act, including a tax credit to assist veterans and wounded warriors in returning to work. On November 21, 2011 President Obama signed the Act into law. The VOW to Hire Heroes Act has the potential to help veterans obtain employment.
We respectfully request that Congress act, as soon as possible, to extend the provisions of WOTC that expired, with the exception of the veterans hiring provision, at the end of calendar year 2011. The success of the Veterans Tax Credit requires the infrastructure of the larger WOTC program.
Many businesses that participate in WOTC share the perspective that, without full WOTC reauthorization, the program falls short in supporting their hiring needs. The most recent Department of Labor data shows that less than 2% of WOTC tax credits issued were for veterans. Without reauthorization of the entire WOTC program, the administrative burden of processing tax credits is too great for businesses and veterans will not receive the opportunity to obtain the gainful employment they deserve.
The WOTC program helped businesses and more than 940,000 individuals last year alone. With reauthorization of the full WOTC program, states and their private sector partners can successfully implement the new Veterans Tax Credit.
We are writing to ask that Congress ensure the success of the VOW to Hire Heroes Act and help stimulate economic growth by reauthorizing the entire WOTC program.