As the year comes to a close, ASTA is pushing Congress to reinstate the Employee Retention Tax Credit (ERTC) “for at least the fourth quarter of 2021” before wrapping up its current session.
“Simply put, without the ERTC or equivalent relief, many travel agencies across the country may not survive the latest setbacks,” Society CEO Zane Kerby said in a Dec. 13 letter addressed to members of Congress.
The ERTC was initially included in 2020’s Cares Act. It provided a refundable tax credit of up to $7,000 per employee, per quarter in 2021 and was designed to help small businesses rehire or retain employees. However, the recent Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act eliminated the ERTC for the fourth quarter.
“As relief programs run dry, it is deeply frustrating to our nation’s small businesses that Congress continues to kick the can down the road when they are facing existential business challenges entirely outside of their control,” Kerby said.
While some lawmakers have introduced legislation /Travel-News/Travel-Agent-Issues/Lawmakers-try-to-reinstate-Employee-Retention-Tax-Credit that would reinstate the ERTC for the fourth quarter, ASTA encouraged Congress to “use any appropriate year-end legislative vehicle” to restore the credit.
ASTA has continuously argued that government action has “played a key role in this catastrophe” for affected businesses like travel agencies, but its assistance has not matched the levels of disruption businesses have seen.
“Ending the ERTC early — in the midst of an extraordinarily challenging businesses environment — freezes the process of rehiring furloughed employees and will lead to additional rounds of layoffs and increase the chances of further agency closures and consolidation,” Kerby added. “We also note that affected employees will face a much less generous system of unemployment benefits than was the case in mid-2020.”
ASTA has created an online grassroots portal and encourages members and nonmembers alike to use it to send messages to lawmakers about the ERTC.
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