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Take Action: Ask Your Members of Congress to Increase Access and Employment Opportunities for People with Disabilities
The Disability Employment Incentive Act (DEIA) would make long overdue improvements in the Disability Access Expenditures Tax Credit and the Architectural and Transportation Barrier Removal Tax Deduction. The tax credit is available to small businesses with gross receipts of less than $1 million annually or with no more than 30 full-time employees. Under DEIA the maximum tax credit will be raised from $5,000 to $10,000. The tax deduction will increase to $30,000 for expenses incurred during a single year by a business in removing existing physical barriers in qualified facilities or transportation vehicles. Businesses will also be able to take the credit for expenses for making their telecommunications and online business operations accessible.

These tax incentives have been available to eligible businesses since 1976 for the deduction and 1990 for the tax credit but their amounts have not increased since then despite obvious increases in renovation and building costs. They may not be used for new structures, only for existing structures where the expenses are used to create accessible spaces to the standards of the U.S. Access Board. These provisions could not only amplify the investments in infrastructure envisioned in the American Jobs Plan but increase opportunities for millions of people with disabilities and their families.

In addition, despite employment protections provided under the Americans with Disabilities Act and other disability employment rights laws, only 32 percent of veterans with both a service-connected and a non-service-connected disability and 37 percent of those with non-service-connected disabilities are employed, compared with over three-quarters of veterans without disabilities. These disabled veterans will face many of the same employment challenges in the years ahead as the country emerges from the pandemic.

The DEIA would also make a number of improvements in tax credits and deductions that benefit PVA members as well as millions of other Americans with disabilities.  It would increase the tax credit for employers who hire a person with a disability and extend the application of the credit to persons receiving Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) benefits. Many PVA members, if they are not working, receive SSDI and the enhancements to the Work Opportunity Tax Credit contained in the DEIA will position many Social Security disability beneficiaries to take advantage of the recovering economy.

PVA Position:
Congress must pass the Disability Employment Incentive Act (H.R. 3765/S. 630), which would make long overdue improvements in tax incentives for businesses to make their facilities more accessible to people with disabilities. The legislation will also enhance the current Work Opportunity Tax Credit available to employers by raising the value of the tax credit, extending the credit’s availability for a second year of employment, and enable the use of the credit for hiring SSDI beneficiaries.
 

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