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Legislative Updates

    LEGISLATIVE  UPDATES:

    December 2019


    The Senate voted to pass H.R. 1865, one of two federal government spending packages that includes four key policy items that SHRM has championed. 

     

    The spending bill repeals the Cadillac Tax on high-value employer-sponsored health plans, which was scheduled to take effect January 2022. SHRM has been tireless in our efforts for full repeal of this tax. In addition, the bill addresses three other policy priorities that SHRM and our members strongly advocated in favor of this Congress:

    1. The Setting Every Community Up for Retirement Enhancement Act (SECURE Act), to make it easier for small employers to set up retirement plans that are less expensive and easier to administer. The SECURE Act would allow unaffiliated employers to offer their employees a 401(k) through a multiple employer plan (MEP), with eased compliance requirements compared to current MEPs. In addition, the bill increases the business tax credit for plan startup costs to make setting up retirement plans more affordable for small businesses. SHRM joined the employer community for the past year in advocating in support of the SECURE Act.
       
    2. The Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC), a federal tax credit available to employers that hire and retain individuals from certain groups that have consistently faced significant barriers to employment is extended for one year through December 31, 2020. More than 450 SHRM members advocated in support of WOTC during the Volunteer Leaders' Business Meeting Hill Day on November 14.
       
    3. E-Verify and Other Workplace Immigration Programs, which provide U.S. employers access to global talent are extended through September 30, 2020. The bill's extensions cover the E-Verify, Conrad 30 for foreign medical graduates, the non-minister special immigrant religious worker and EB-5 programs. Of importance, the bill also retains a directive to protect J-1 educational and cultural exchange programs from any modification unless it goes through a formal rulemaking, Congress is consulted, and the modification is publicly reported.  SHRM advocates for a modern workplace immigration system that allows employers to access top global talent while protecting U.S. workers.