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May 01, 2008
Blagojevich to Employers: Hire Veterans

A recent report from the federal government shows that the number of veterans who aren't in the labor force is increasing, and now Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich says that Illinois is stepping up its efforts to help veterans find jobs.

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Among those efforts is the new Veteran's Tax Credit. Beginning this filing season, Illinois employers can earn tax credits for hiring veterans who have recently been on active duty overseas. The credit amounts to 5 percent of total wages paid, up to a maximum of $600 annually, for wages paid to each veteran hired after January 1, 2007. The veteran must work for the employer for at least 185 days during the tax year in order to qualify. The credit is available for veterans who were members of the armed forces, the armed forces reserves, or the Illinois National Guard on active duty in Operation Desert Storm, Operation Enduring Freedom, or Operation Iraqi Freedom. Employers may claim the Veteran's Tax Credit on 2007 tax returns filed in 2008.

Other state efforts to get veterans into jobs include the work of local veterans employment representatives and disabled veterans outreach program specialists employed by the Illinois Department of Employment Security (IDES), who collaborate with employers and host employer workshops to promote the benefits of hiring veterans throughout the state. Blagojevich says that Illinois hosts about 24 such employer seminars per year, throughout the state, at which Labor Department officials explain federal and state tax credits for the hiring of veterans.

For more information on Illinois services for employers hiring veterans, visit the IDES website at www.ides.state.il.us/vets. To learn more about the Veteran's Tax Credit, go to the Department of Revenue's website, www.tax.illinois.gov, or call the Department of Revenue's toll-free assistance line at 1-800-732-8866. For further information on Illinois veteran programs and initiatives, visit the website of the Illinois Department of Veterans Affairs at www.state.il.us/agency/dva or call 800-437-9824. 

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