Economy & Business

The Corner

Tax Cut Armageddon, Part Five!

From the Thursday edition of the Morning Jolt:

Armageddon, Part Five

As Nancy Pelosi warned us… it’s Armageddon out there! (See parts one, two, three, and four.)

It’s Armageddon for the roughly one million hourly employees of Wal-Mart!

Walmart’s employees will reap the benefits of the recent tax law changes, as the company raises its starting wage and distributes bonuses to eligible workers.

The big-box retailer announced Thursday it will be increasing its starting wage rate for hourly employees in the U.S. to $11, and expand maternity and parental leave benefits. The retailer also will pay a one-time cash bonus to eligible employees of as much as $1,000.

Currently, Walmart’s starting wage is $9 until workers complete a training program. Then, they receive $10.

The company is also creating a new benefit that provides financial assistance to its employees who are looking to adopt a child, giving them as much as $5,000 per child to cover expenses such as adoption agency fees, translation fees and legal costs.

It’s Armageddon for trash collectors!

Waste Management, Inc. announced today that, in light of the meaningful contributions of its employees and the new U.S. corporate tax structure, the company will distribute US $2,000 in 2018 to every North American employee not on a bonus or sales incentive plan; that includes hourly and other employees.

Approximately 34,000 qualified Waste Management employees could receive this special bonus.

It’s Armageddon for electricity customers!

Washington Gas officials say they plan to pass on an estimated $34 million in annual tax savings in the rates charged to 1.1 million customers in the District, Maryland and Virginia. The lower rates would kick in early this year, the company said.

Dominion Energy, Virginia’s largest utility, with 2.5 million customers, is evaluating the impact of the corporate tax cut and “how it might benefit our customers,” spokesman Chuck Penn said.

It’s Armageddon for winery employees!

In response to the tax cut bill that passed this week, John Jordan, owner of Jordan Winery in Sonoma County, California, announces that he will give all eligible winery employees a $1,000 bonus as a result of the passage of the 2017 tax reform bill.

It’s Armageddon for… digital sheet music makers!

The new year brings a new salary increase for all 55 employees at Musicnotes, Inc., the worldwide leader in digital sheet music based in Madison, Wisconsin. Effective January 1st, the 3% salary increase is tied specifically to corporate tax reform and is in addition to Musicnotes’ existing annual raises to eligible employees.

It’s Armageddon for pharmaceutical companies!

Nephron Pharmaceuticals Corporation CEO Lou Kennedy today announced five percent increases for all employees with the exception of commissioned employees. The raises are a direct result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act that was signed into law last week by President Donald Trump.

It’s Armageddon for credit-card company employees!

“Tax reform in the United States will strengthen Visa’s competitive position globally and create new opportunities for Visa to invest in our business,” the company said in a statement. “With the additional 401(k) match, Visa’s U.S. employees will enjoy a sustained benefit, consistent with the role they will play in building our business.”

The company said it will increase its 401(k) contribution to 10 percent of base salary. In other words, an employee who earns $100,000 a year can set aside $5,000 and the company will contribute $10,000. Visa’s longstanding policy has been to contribute $2 for every $1 an employee contributes. Employees can now contribute up to 5 percent of base pay, up from 3 percent.

Oh, the humanity! When will it all end?

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