Rep. Brady sponsors bill to give tax relief to hurricane victims

Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX) introduced legislation this week to deliver temporary tax relief to the victims of Hurricanes Harvey, Irma, and Maria.

“Hundreds of thousands of people throughout Texas, Florida, the U.S. Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico and other areas have been devastated by hurricanes and severe flooding that destroyed their homes, their vehicles, and their workplaces,” Brady said. “Today, I’ve released legislation that delivers targeted, meaningful tax relief that will make it easier for people to recover and return home as soon as possible.”

The Disaster Tax Relief and Airport and Airway Extension Act of 2017 helps families and communities in several ways, including eliminating the requirement that personal casualty losses must exceed 10 percent of adjusted gross income to qualify for a deduction.

It also provides an exception to the 10 percent early retirement plan withdrawal penalty for qualified hurricane relief distributions. Further, it allows for the re-contribution of retirement plan withdrawals for home purchases canceled due to eligible disasters and gives people flexibility for loans from retirement plans for qualified hurricane relief.

In addition, it suspends limitations on the deduction for charitable contributions associated with qualified hurricane relief made before Dec. 31, 2017. Also, it provides a tax credit for 40 percent of wages (up to $6,000 per employee) paid by a disaster-affected employer to an employee from a core disaster area.

“My bill specifically helps hurricane victims keep more of their paycheck, deduct more of the cost of their expensive property damage, and have more affordable and immediate access to money they have saved for their retirement,” Brady said. “The legislation will also encourage even more Americans to donate generously to help those in need. Taken together, these tax relief measures will help more people be able to bear the tremendous expense of recovering from these destructive hurricanes.”