The National Grocers Association is applauding the introduction of the FRNT LINE Act, authored by Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA). This bill would provide payroll and income tax relief for essential workers, such as grocery industry associates, who have continued their work during the coronavirus pandemic.
“This pandemic has illustrated not only the resiliency of independent grocers, but also how critically important independent grocers are for local communities and our nation’s food security. From meat cutters to grocery stockers, produce clerks to cashiers, distribution center order selectors to truck drivers, the independent supermarket rallied to support their communities, and we are grateful for their willingness to step up during these challenging times,” said NGA President and CEO Greg Ferrara. “On behalf of the independent supermarket operators, the wholesalers who serve them and their store associates who have worked tirelessly and performed heroically throughout the coronavirus pandemic, we offer our full support of this bill that recognizes those efforts.”
Under Ernst’s FRNT LINE Act, federal income taxes would be suspended for essential workers up to an annual income cap set at the highest level of pay for an enlisted person in the U.S. Armed Forces. Additionally, the bill would provide suspension of federal payroll taxes for essential workers who earn up to $50,000 annually.
Recognizing essential workers through tax relief has strong support from the American public, according to a poll of nearly 2,000 registered voters from the International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA) conducted by Morning Consult. Results from that poll show that eight in 10 registered voters support providing food supply chain workers – grocery store workers (81 percent), agricultural and food production workers (79 percent) and farm workers (79 percent) – temporary tax relief during the COVID-19 pandemic.
NGA members have helped urge their congressional representatives to provide grocery industry workers with well-deserved tax relief for their commitment during this pandemic. NGA members sent more than 3,200 letters in total, a record-setting amount of grassroots engagement from the independent supermarket industry.