TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) — Kansas legislators are considering a proposal that many disability rights advocates say would encourage employers to keep paying disabled workers less than the minimum wage, bucking a national trend.
A Kansas House bill would expand a state income tax credit for goods and services purchased from vendors employing disabled workers, doubling the total allowed to $10 million annually. A committee approved it Monday, sending it to the full House for debate, possibly later this week.
Vendors qualify now by paying all of their disabled workers at least the minimum wage, but the measure would allow vendors to pay some workers less if those workers aren’t involved in purchases of goods and services to earn the tax credit. Supporters argue the bill would enable more vendors to participate, boosting job and vocational training opportunities for disabled people.