Due to continuing economic turmoil in the state, the Washington House of Representatives has voted to delay a proposed payroll tax by 18 months. This tax was initially created to fund the Washington Cares Fund, a government program to ensure that all state residents will have access to and the ability to afford long-term care. The program aims to give everyone who doesn’t opt-out financial support for long-term care once residents are over 65. The fund intends to lessen family burden and give all Washingtonian residents peace of mind, no matter their financial situation.
However, with uncertain financial circumstances within Washington, the House voted to delay the start of the $0.58 employer payroll tax by 18 months. Along with this, a second bill was passed that will allow those who will not be affected, will not benefit, or do not want to participate to opt-out of the tax, and subsequently, access to the fund.
The future of the fund after the delay remains uncertain, as many Republicans in the House and Senate oppose the bill. That said, with the current democrat majority, it is likely the fund’s rollout will continue as planned after Washington stabilizes financially. Until July 1, 2023, however, the fund and its financial aid services remain on hold.