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Take Action: Ask Your Members of Congress to Strengthen the ADA and Help More Small Businesses Become Accessible
The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) is over thirty years old. Yet, many small businesses in older buildings are unable to welcome people with disabilities into their facilities because of the substantial costs of barrier removal. A Disabled Access Credit up to $5000 was created in 1990 to provide a tax incentive to eligible small businesses with gross receipts of less than $1 million annually or with no more than 30 full-time employees to align their properties with the ADA. These limits have not been increased since then thus diminishing the value of the tax credit. 

Meanwhile, complaints against businesses violating the ADA have soared in recent years reflecting frustration among people with disabilities with ongoing barriers to access and creating a backlash against the ADA among some policymakers. To respond to these issues, the Disabled Access Credit Expansion Act (H.R. 4714/S. 2481) would:

  • Increase the ceiling on eligible expenses for the tax credit from 50 percent of $10,250 to 50 percent of $20,500 and expand eligibility to include small businesses with gross receipts of $2.5 million or less. It would also index the ceiling to inflation.
  • Codify the Department of Justice’s (DOJ) ADA Mediation Program, which is meant to help individuals with disabilities and businesses reach a resolution without increased litigation. It would authorize $1 million for Fiscal Year 2022 to support these efforts and require biannual reports to Congress on the program’s effectiveness; and
  • Require DOJ to provide a report to Congress regarding the calls the ADA Information Line receives. The data collected would be used to make improvements to better assist individuals with disabilities regarding their rights under the law.

PVA Position:
Congress should pass the Disabled Access Credit Expansion Act (H.R. 4714/S. 2481), which would make long overdue improvements in the 1990 access credit and reenergize the DOJ program that seeks to resolve disputes between people with disabilities and businesses without costly and antagonistic litigation.
 

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