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Nebraska bill incentivizes businesses to hire people convicted of felonies

Updated: Apr 27, 2023

The bill was introduced by Senator Justin Wayne, who represents North Omaha. The bill offers an income tax credit to businesses who hire people with felony convictions. The reduction is applicable for the first year of their employment, or until they make $20,000.

“There are so many people who are coming out of incarceration who just need an opportunity, so something like this tax credit will get employees to say ‘well, okay, I’ll take this chance.’ It gives the people coming out of incarceration that opportunity to say ‘I can prove to you that I’m a good worker,” says Jasmine Harris, member of RISE Academy.

This bill is a great incentive, however it is important to educate employers about the benefits of hiring formerly incarcerated people. At the end of the day, it is up to the businesses to provide that second chance.

“We say ‘go pay your debt to society’ and people come out of incarceration, and they don’t have pathways forward to be now what you would consider a contributing citizen to the community. So, they need these jobs, they need housing, they need opportunities,” she says. “So I would say yes, it's an incentive, but let's do the right thing and let's hire people.” - says Harris

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