Virginia policy change offers employers $200M tax relief

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) — State officials are making a temporary policy change that will provide about $200 million in payroll tax relief next year to Virginia businesses that laid off workers amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

Under an executive order from Gov. Ralph Northam, the Virginia Employment Commission won’t be counting layoffs that took place in April, May or June of 2020 against businesses when calculating unemployment insurance tax rates for 2021.

“This relief is absolutely critical for business owners across the Commonwealth, many of whom continue to struggle as a result of COVID-19,” state Del. Lamont Bagby, chair of the Commission on Unemployment Compensation, said in a statement. “Today’s actions will save over $200 million for Virginia’s employers and provide a much-needed boost for small businesses, workers, and our economic recovery.”

The governor’s office announced the change Tuesday, saying the change would prevent Virginia’s struggling businesses from having to devote critical resources to higher state payroll taxes.

Read the full order here.

More Coronavirus News

Looking for more information? D.C., Maryland and Virginia are each releasing more data every day. Visit their official sites here: Virginia | Maryland | D.C.

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