MGP introduces legislation to encourage small businesses to offer paid leave

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Third Congressional District Rep. Marie Gluesenkamp Perez, D-Washougal, has filed bipartisan legislation to help small businesses offer paid family and medical leave.

On June 27, Gluesenkamp Perez joined Reps. Randy Feenstra, R-Iowa, Stephanie Bice, R-Oklahoma, and Yadira Caraveo, D-Colorado, in introducing the Paid Family and Medical Leave Tax Credit Extension and Enhancement Act. If passed, the legislation would extend and expand tax credits for employers that voluntarily offer paid family and medical leave (PFML) to employees.

“Taking care of your health, newborn, or family when they’re most in need shouldn’t come at the cost of paying the bills,” Gluesenkamp Perez said in a statement. “This bipartisan legislation will make the successful paid family and medical leave tax credit permanent and expand access to more Washington-based businesses so more families can feel the benefits.”

Under the legislation, the period a worker must be employed to claim the credit would be reduced from one year to six months, which Gluesenkamp Perez said would allow for quicker support of younger workers.



According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 41% of employees at businesses with more than 500 employees have access to PFML compared to 20% of workers at companies with fewer than 99 employees who can access the benefits.

“BPC Action applauds Reps. Feenstra, Bice, Gluesenkamp Perez, and Caraveo for introducing the Paid Family and Medical Leave Tax Credit Extension and Enhancement Act. We are pleased to endorse this bill to make permanent and expand the employer tax credit for paid family and medical leave known as 45S,” Michele Stockwell, president of the Bipartisan Policy Center Action, said in a statement. “This tax credit helps businesses provide paid family and medical leave benefits to hard-working Americans and we encourage Congress to take up this important bill.”

Sens. Deb Fischer, R-Nebraska, and Angus King, I-Maine, have introduced companion legislation in the Senate.