News Article

Sinema, Katko Introduce Legislation to Help Arizonans Prepare, Save for Parenthood

Child Care

Office of U.S. Rep. Kyrsten Sinema

3/11/16

Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Kyrsten Sinema (AZ-09) and Congressman John Katko (NY-24) recently introduced bipartisan legislation to help Arizona families prepare and save for parenthood.

The Working Parents Flexibility Act allows an individual and his/her employer to contribute pre-tax income to a Parental Leave Savings Account, similar to a health savings account. Earnings on the account are not taxed and can be withdrawn tax-free by the owner during the first year of parenthood.

“Many parents are unable to take advantage of unpaid leave, because they simply cannot afford to go without pay for any length of time,” said Congresswoman Sinema. “The Working Parents Flexibility Act is a responsible, commonsense solution to provide new parents with financial certainty during the critical early weeks of parenthood. This bill strengthens our economy and helps Arizona families get ahead.”

This legislation is endorsed by First Focus, a bipartisan advocacy organization dedicated to making children and families a priority in federal policy.

“Without the assistance of paid leave while caring for a newborn, many new parents are faced with the choice between economic hardship, dependence on public assistance and returning to work prematurely,” said Bruce Lesley, President of First Focus. “This legislation is an innovative way to facilitate paid leave by allowing working parents to save pretax funds in a parental savings account, while also allowing employers to contribute matching funds to the plan to maximize benefits for the parents’ use in covering their wages during their maternal and/or paternal leave.”

Funds contributed to the Parental Leave Savings Account can also be rolled tax-free into a retirement or college savings account, but would face a tax penalty if withdrawn for other purposes.

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