Tax credits for employers who hire young ex-offenders

SAN DIEGO (KUSI) – A state lawmaker from San Diego is pushing a bill that would open more job opportunities to troubled youth.

State Senator Ben Hueso is trying to help young adults who are looking for a fresh start after serving time behind bars.

California has more people in jail or prison than any other state in the nation. This bill addresses a very real problem. 

What happens when hundreds of thousands young people finish their sentence and get out, only to find they can’t catch a break?

Alan Moreno, 22, works part time at an e-waste recycling center. He works for the Urban Corps of San Diego County. He’s also taking classes to earn his high school degree.

Moreno is one of the young Californians who may benefit from a bill proposed by Senator Ben Hueso.

Hueso wants to give people who are 18 to 25, and previously convicted of a felony crime, a better chance of landing a job.

The senator has proposed a tax credit for employers who hire people like Moreno.

The bill would allow a company to claim a tax credit equal to 20 percent of the employee’s pay, with a ceiling set at $15 thousand for the business.

Robert Chavez is the CEO of Urban Corps, a job training and education program. Chavez said this state should reward employers for giving young people a second chance.

Hueso said the 14 months after a person is released are the most critical in trying to re-enter the community.

Without rehabilitation and the chance at a steady job, younger ex-felons will go right back to jail.

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