Senator Mitt Romney has proposed that essential workers receive bonuses to compensate them for the risks they face in their fight against the coronavirus. Romney suggested $12 per hour bonuses in the months of May, June, and July.
The bill, called the “Patriot Pay,” proposes that the workers will be partially paid by the federal government (three-quarters), and the employer (one-quarter). Employers will have to certify that their employees were exposed to a high risk of contracting the covid-19.
How the bill works
Essential workers who earn less than $50,000 per annum would receive a 75% refundable payroll tax credit for a bonus of up to $12 an hour. For workers earning over $50,000 per annum, the tax credit would phase out by $24 for every additional $500 in income, up to a maximum of $90,000 in income. An employee can receive a maximum tax credit of $1,440 per month, meaning a full-time employee would get up to $1,920 in monthly bonuses.
People who would receive the bonuses include those working in the hospitals, health manufacturers, and food processors and distributors.
To receive the relief, employers would be expected to file a claim to the IRS through the system that advances the paid leave tax credit. The IRS would also be authorized by congress to partner with payroll companies that may be able to advance the credit more quickly.