WOTC Coalition President Paul Suplizio shares with us his latest insight from Capitol Hill. He explains with the President’s budget now public and Obamacare set aside for now, that leadership is optimistic that they can achieve agreement on a budget that lifts the debt ceiling, funds the government for FY 2018 and passes tax reform before the close of the year.
Paul notes that leaders are aiming to pass a congressional budget in June, containing some of the President’s cuts, rejecting others and some are preparing to cut into entitlements that weren’t touched. The President will likely fight for his signature demands of defense, veterans, infrastructure, school choice, immigration and the wall.
WOTC is presently in the “Tax Expenditures” section of the budget and projected costs assume expiration at the end of 2019. The State Workforce Agencies that administer the tax credit are on the reduction block, which will likely be a disagreement point for Appropriation Committees.
Paul sees agreement from both houses as key to passing tax reform – overrides can be made under reconciliation but tax reform can’t be filibustered and a simple majority can pass the bill. Content negotiations will intensify with the Treasury Secretary and passage could be delayed until 2018. The President’s budget requires revenue neutrality meaning eliminating to find funding, while Congress is generally agreeable to allowing cuts to add to the deficit.
WOTC looks to be on solid ground as the President’s letter on the budget states, “Work must be the center of our social policy.” The tax reform struggle will likely pit stake holders against one another for a place in the bill that will be decided by 535 congressman and senators before the Republicans eventually pass it. If this takes a long time, we’ll simply have more opportunities to reach out to our own legislators in support of WOTC.