President Joe Biden on Wednesday will announce tax credits to businesses that provide paid time off for some people to get COVID-19 shots as he seeks to get corporate America more involved in the vaccination campaign, officials said.
Biden administration officials said the government plans to reimburse businesses for the cost of giving workers as many as 80 hours paid time off to get their shots or recover from any vaccination side effects.
The tax credit of up to $511 per day through September for each worker would be given to businesses with fewer than 500 employees, officials said. Businesses of that size employ roughly half of the country's private sector workers. The tax credits were authorized under Democratic-backed COVID-19 pandemic relief legislation passed by Congress and signed by Biden.
The president also plans to make a televised appeal for all businesses to help convince people to get their shots, officials said.
The administration's chief problem in its response to the pandemic is now shifting from securing enough vaccine supply for most Americans to convincing enough people to seek out the available shots.
Biden is also set to announce on Wednesday that the administration had met his target goal of getting 200 million coronavirus vaccine shots in arms within his first 100 days in office, officials said. That period ends next week.
The United States has expanded vaccination eligibility to most American adults, and more than half that population has had at least one vaccine dose, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. A third of U.S. adults are fully vaccinated, as well as 26% of the population overall, it said.
But COVID-19 is still killing hundreds of Americans daily and many Americans have shown a reluctance to get vaccinated. Countries around the world with less successful vaccination campaigns than the United States are dealing with a spike in infections.
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