American Bakers Association Applauds the Introduction of the FRNT LINE Act

Washington, DC – ABA applauds the introduction of the FRNT LINE (Financial Relief Noting The Large Impact Of Our Nation’s Essential Employees) Act, introduced on July 21, 2020 by Senator Joni Ernst (R – IA). 

The FRNT LINE Act will provide income tax relief for essential workers as defined by the recent Department of Homeland Security guidance identifying essential critical infrastructure. The income tax level will be set at the level of pay for the highest-paid enlisted person in the U.S. Armed Forces.

“The baking industry and their suppliers are rising to the occasion every day to ensure the food supply for our communities,” said Robb MacKie, President and CEO, American Bakers Association. “We appreciate Senator Ernst’s leadership in introducing this bill, which will provide tax relief to the essential workers who continue to support the American people throughout this public health emergency.” 

Additionally, the bill will provide payroll tax relief by suspending federal payroll taxes to essential workers who earn up to $50,000 annually. The legislation provides for tax relief beginning April 1, 2020, and will end on the date the federal emergency declaration is lifted (as by the President of the United States under the Robert T. Stafford Disaster Relief and Emergency Assistance Act in response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic), with an automatic sunset on December 31, 2020.  

In a poll of nearly 2,000 registered voters from the International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA) conducted by Morning Consult found 79% registered voters support offering temporary tax relief amid the coronavirus pandemic to food production workers. The IDFA poll conducted by Morning Consult also revealed 90% of voters believe agricultural and food production workers are essential workers amidst the coronavirus pandemic. 

A number of industry groups, including ABA and 26 other groups, wrote a letter in support of Ernst’s FRNT LINE Act. The letter can be found here.

“The right thing to do is very clear,” added MacKie. “We urge the Senate to pass the FRNT LINE Act to demonstrate to our baking industry workers they are essential, they are appreciated, today and always.” 

For a one-pager on Ernst’s FRNT LINE Act, click here

For bill text of the FRNT LINE Act, click here.

The American Bakers Association (ABA) is the Washington D.C.-based voice of the wholesale baking industry. Since 1897, ABA has worked to increase protection from costly government overreach, build the talent pool of skilled workers with specialized training programs, and forge industry alignment by establishing a more receptive environment to grow the baking industry. ABA advocates on behalf of more than 1,000 baking facilities and baking company suppliers. ABA members produce bread, rolls, cookies, crackers, bagels, sweet goods, tortillas, and many other wholesome, nutritious, baked products feeding America’s families. The baking industry generates more than $153 billion in economic activity annually and employs more than 799,500 highly skilled people.