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Archive for February, 2019

New tax rates may affect San Antonio jobs

Wednesday, February 6th, 2019

A drop in the tax rate may affect San Antonio jobs, according to a recent announcement.

The average unemployment insurance (UI) tax rate for all employers will be 1.25 percent for calendar year (CY) 2019, dropping from 1.37 percent in CY 2018 to its lowest point since 2009. The average tax rate for experience-rated employers is 1.06 percent for CY 2019, and is down from 1.20 percent in CY 2018.

The minimum tax rate is paid by 340,158 employers, which represents 65.6 percent of experience-rated employers. The standard minimum UI tax rate paid by Texas employers in CY 2019 will be 0.36 percent, which is down from 0.46 percent in CY 2018. These employer-paid UItaxes replenish the Texas Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund, which provides temporary income for Texas workers who lose their jobs through no fault of their own.

An experience rating is determined by the amount of an employer’s taxable wages and the amount of UI benefits that have been paid to former employees and charged to the employer’s account for the last three years. An employer paying the standard minimum tax will pay $32.40 per employee in CY 2019 on the first $9,000 in wages per employee compared with $41.40 per employee in CY 2018. The maximum UI tax rate, paid by 5.3 percent of Texas employers, will be 6.36 percent, decreasing from CY 2018 at 6.46 percent.

TWC is dedicated to finding ways to lower the financial impact of UI taxes on Texas employers. TWC and its 28 local workforce boards also are committed to helping UI claimants return to work as soon as possible. Through automated processes and database cross matches with state and federal agencies, TWC continues to strengthen and improve efforts to detect and prevent UI fraud. TWC pledges to continue efforts to keep taxes as low as possible and minimize the effects on Texas employers.

Because the Texas Unemployment Compensation Trust Fund has risen above its statutory minimum required balance, TWC will not charge employers any deficit tax in 2019. The components of the CY 2019 tax rate are as follows:

  • The general tax rate is based on claims against an employer’s account. If TWC has paid benefits to former employees who were laid off or separated through no fault of their own in the past three years, then those employers will pay a general tax.
  • The replenishment tax rate is charged to all experience-rated employers to cover unemployment claims not charged to a specific employer. This tax tends to rise following economic slowdowns when claims increase and businesses close.
  • The employment training assessment is imposed on each employer paying contributions under the Texas Unemployment Compensation Act as a separate assessment of 0.10 percent of wages paid by an employer. Money from the assessment is deposited to the credit of the employment and training investment holding fund.

Grants may benefit San Antonio education jobs

Wednesday, February 6th, 2019

A number of school grants may go towards benefitting San Antonio education jobs.

The Texas Workforce Commission (TWC) has awarded three individual Jobs and Education for Texans (JET) grants to independent school districts (ISDs): a $271,472 grant to Raymondville ISD; a $208,383 grant to Donna ISD; and a $280,630 grant to Pharr-San Juan-Alamo ISD. The schools will use the grants to purchase and install equipment necessary to train 779 students for careers in high-demand occupations including welding fabrication and emergency medical services.

“It’s great to be back in the Valley and joining our community leaders to help students succeed and our economy grow,” said TWCCommissioner Representing Labor Julian Alvarez. “There’s a direct connection between high-skills and good careers, and TWC is committed to helping prepare Texas students for the jobs of tomorrow with the assistance of JET grants.”

“Ensuring businesses benefit from a skilled workforce is a big part of our economic development strategy in the Valley,” said state Sen. Eddie Lucio, Jr. “Thanks to the leadership of Commissioner Alvarez and the Texas Workforce Commission, the Rio Grande Valley is a great beneficiary of these wonderful opportunities to improve career opportunities for students.”

“Texas teachers are integral, key players for the educational and career success of our students,” said state Rep. Ryan Guillen. “I’m proud to join my colleagues and TWC as the agency presents these JET grant to expand career training opportunities for our high school students.”

The JET grant program allocates $10 million each biennium to defray start-up costs associated with the development of career and technical education programs to public community, state and technical colleges, and ISDs. These entities can apply for a JET grant to purchase and install equipment necessary for the development of career and technical education courses or programs that lead to a license, certificate or post-secondary degree in a high-demand occupation.

“We’re ecstatic and grateful for the Texas Workforce Commission’s support in granting us more than $208,000 in JET grant funding,” said Donna ISD Superintendent Dr. Hafedh Azaiez. “This is the first time our school district has received such a grant, which will be used to enhance our CTE (Career and Technical Education) Welding Program with the purchase of much-needed equipment. Our students will benefit tremendously and be better prepared to tackle their post high school endeavors.”

San Antonio construction jobs grow

Wednesday, February 6th, 2019

A number of San Antonio construction jobs have grown, according to recent labor statistics.

As 2018 concluded, the Texas economy added another month of positive employment growth, with 38,000 seasonally adjusted nonfarm positions added for the month of December. Texas’ seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 3.7 percent, and has remained at the same historic 43-year low since October 2018. Annual employment growth for Texas was 3.2 percent in December, and marked 104 consecutive months of annual growth. Over the year, Texas has added 391,800 jobs as Total Nonfarm employment reached a new high of 12,744,100.

Private sector annual employment growth was 3.7 percent in December and has held above 3.0 percent since April 2018. Ten out of 11 major industries expanded over the month as well as over the year.

Mining and Logging registered a series-high annual growth rate of 18.0 percent. Annually, this industry also led all other major industries in Texas since May 2017. Construction added 4,500 jobs over the month. It grew at 6.4 percent over the year, second fastest among major industries in Texas. Its annual growth has stayed positive since September 2011.

“With businesses hiring at a record clip, there’s never been a better time to plan a great Texas career,” said TWC Commissioner Representing Labor Julian Alvarez. “A great way to start a career in growing, well-paying fields in industries like construction or mining and logging is through Registered Apprenticeships, where employees can earn while they learn. Visit www.apprenticeships.gov or your local Texas Workforce Solutions office to learn more about these great opportunities.”

The Midland Metropolitan Statistical Area (MSA) recorded December’s lowest unemployment rate among Texas MSAs with a non-seasonally adjusted rate of 2.1percent, followed by the Amarillo MSA and Odessa MSA which tied for the second lowest with a rate of 2.6 percent. The Austin-Round Rock MSA recorded the third lowest rate of 2.7 percent.

“The December labor statistics show annual growth of 388,800 jobs in Texas’ private-sector industries, and 35,400 jobs added over the month. This speaks to the ongoing strength of our economy and the incredible opportunities it creates for job seekers and employers,” said TWC Commissioner Representing the Public Robert D. Thomas. “Through Texas Workforce Commission workforce training programs such as the Skills Development Fund and the Jobs and Education for Texans (JET), workers have the opportunity to realize the full potential that our state has to offer.”