NYS Launches $35M Restaurant Return-To-Work Tax Credit Program

Image by Justin Gould/WNYNewsNow.

ALBANY (WENY) – New York State has launched a $35 million Restaurant Return-to-Work Tax Credit program.

The program is designed to “help expand employment opportunities for workers and provide relief to COVID-impacted restaurants”. The program offers a tax credit for the “rapid hiring of restaurant workers to reduce the… industry’s pandemic-induced economic difficulties”.

Qualifying restaurants could receive a $5,000 tax credit per net new hire, totaling up to $50,000 in tax credits per business.

“New York’s restaurants are not only the best in the world, they are vital to the state’s economy, employing thousands of people and showcasing cuisines that reflect our great diversity. Restaurants also serve as an entrepreneurial outlet and are often families’ gateways to the American Dream,” Governor Cuomo said. “The restaurant industry was among the hardest hit during the COVID-19 pandemic, as public health and safety concerns restricted many of its service operations. With the state’s COVID-19 restrictions lifted, restaurants opening to full capacity, and tables filling up, this will support the much-needed hiring of workers by these establishments to meet their increased demand.”

The program is available to small, independently-owned restaurants in areas that were designated as Orange or Red Zones for at least 30 consecutive days; that includes parts of Steuben County, Chemung County and Tioga County.

There is also a “fast track” option that allows restaurants to claim credits ahead of filing their 2021 taxes.

More information on the program, including application details, can be found here.


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