Ammonia group supports federal job training bill

Ammonia group supports federal job training bill

The Ammonia Refrigeration Foundation (ARF) is supporting the passage of U.S. legislation that would provide tax credits for donations to worker training, development and apprenticeship programs.

Introduced in March by U.S. RepresentativeLloydSmucker(R-PA-16), the legislation – called the USA Workforce Tax Credit Act (H.R. 5153) – seeks to help “address the nation’s skills gap” in manufacturing, according to USA Workforce, acoalition was founded to advocate for job training policies.

The bill would help the HVAC&R industry, which is facing a widely acknowledged lack of trained technicians who can take over for retiring workers and help advance the adoption of natural refrigerant systems.

The USA Workforce Tax Credit legislation is designed to encourage charitable donations for community-based apprenticeship initiatives, career and technical education, workforce development, and K-12 educational preparedness.

“Enacting this proposed legislation would meet the urgent need to ensure the preparation of current and future workers for the changing needs of the U.S. economy,” said USA Workforce.

“This is a super important bill that can affect our small business owners/manufacturers and our industry, as well as others,” said Lois Stirewalt O’Connor,executive director, Alexandria, Va.-based ARF, an affiliate of the International Institute of Ammonia Refrigeration (IIAR).

O’Connor participated in a panel held this month by USA Workforce to promote and discuss the workforce development issues facing the manufacturing sector.

According to the Department of Labor, 6.7 million jobs are unfilled, including 451,000 manufacturing jobs, “because Americans lack the requisite skills,” said USA Workforce.

Under H.R. 5153, eligible nonprofit organizationsthat could receive tax-­‐credited charitable donationsinclude educational institutions, community organizations, training institutes, community colleges, scholarship groups, and nonprofits affiliated with labor unions and labor-­‐management committees.

The bill would allow a maximum credit of $250,000 for individuals or corporations, capped at no more than 25 percent of a taxpayer’s overall tax bill. The tax credit would be capped at $2 billion annually, beginning in tax year 2019.