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Employers recognize the value military service brings to the workplace. Veterans bring experience, skills and leadership abilities that strengthen the Texas workforce.
Federal tax benefits may be available to employers that hire veterans under the Work Opportunity Tax Credit (WOTC). Employers can receive up to a $9,600 tax credit by hiring a veteran. Tax credits currently are available for hires in the following categories of veterans:
|WOTC Target Group||Maximum Tax Credit|
|Disabled veterans with a service-connected disability who have been unemployed for at least 6 months||$9,600|
|Veterans who have been unemployed for at least 6 months||$5,600|
|Disabled veterans with a service-connected disability||$4,800|
|Veterans receiving Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) benefits||$2,400|
|Veterans who have been unemployed for at least 4 weeks||$2,400|
Employers also can receive tax credits by hiring individuals from one of several non-veteran target groups. For more information, see Work Opportunity Tax Credit.
Employers hiring multiple WOTC-qualified employees can see a significant reduction in their federal income taxes. These benefits are explained and claimed on IRS Form 5884.
Another program that might benefit employers is the U.S. Department of Defense Mentor-Protégé Program, which allows certain government contractors to receive reimbursements for training or incidental costs associated with training physically-challenged veterans.
The Texas Workforce Commission’s (TWC) Skills for Veterans initiative dedicates $1 million from the Skills Development Fund to address the training needs of post-9/11 veterans returning home and entering the Texas workforce. Skills for Veterans will enhance the skills of veterans, which will benefit Texas employers. Employers who hire post-9/11 era veterans, especially those who served in Operation Iraqi Freedom/Operation New Dawn or Operation Enduring Freedom, may be eligible to participate in this training opportunity. All private businesses, including private, nonprofit hospitals, can apply to TWC for training offered by their local community or technical college, or the Texas Engineering Extension Service (TEEX), to upgrade the skills of newly hired veterans. We review the applications and work with the college to fund the specific courses selected by businesses for their employees.
The Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs (OFCCP) recently published its Final Rule on VEVRAA (Vietnam Era Veterans’ Readjustment Assistance Act of 1974). The new rule, which became effective on March 24, 2014, includes new requirements for federal contractors. The good news is that WorkInTexas.com can help federal contractors meet the mandatory job listing compliance requirements.
The Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act of 1994 (USERRA) provides that returning service members are reemployed in the job that they would have attained had they not been absent for military service, with the same seniority, status, and pay, as well as other rights and benefits determined by seniority. USERRA also requires that reasonable efforts (such as training or retraining) be made to enable returning service members to refresh or upgrade their skills to help them qualify for reemployment. The U.S. Department of Labor's Veterans Employment and Training Service provides information on complying with the requirements of USERRA.
Active duty service members exiting the military may face challenges transitioning to civilian life and the workplace. To assist those veterans, TWC established the Texas Veterans Leadership Program. Twenty-eight Veterans Resource and Referral Specialists are based in workforce development areas across Texas to assist their fellow veterans with job search activities, training opportunities and other resources.
The following organizations can provide additional information on how you can help returning veterans in the work place:
If you have questions about the benefits of hiring veterans or have an open position you would like to fill with a veteran, please contact TWC's Texas Veterans Leadership Program team at 888-VET-TEX1 or firstname.lastname@example.org, or your local Veterans Resource and Referral Specialist.