Bill established to compensate Westchester residents volunteering in Gulf Coast

The call to help victims of Hurricane Katrina has been answered by many volunteers throughout Westchester. Now, one local congresswoman is establishing a law to ensure that volunteers are compensated for their hard work.

Congresswoman Nita Lowey (D- Harrison) is making sure employees are not penalized at work for trying to help out. She announced a new bill called "AID" at the Westchester chapter of the American Red Cross in White Plains Monday. It would encourage employers to continue paying their workers volunteering in the Gulf Coast by giving companies a tax break.

Employers would receive a tax credit of up to 50 percent of the employee?s salary. It would be capped at $3,000 a month for three months, but employers would have to provide full benefits for volunteers in order to receive the tax credit. Volunteers from the Red Cross say this kind of bill will benefit the many individuals who want to help out but couldn't because of their jobs.

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