Speeches And Statements


February 11, 2003

Teacher Tax Cut Act

Mr. Speaker, I am pleased to introduce two pieces of legislation that raise the pay of teachers and other educators by cutting their taxes. I am sure that all my colleagues agree that it is long past time to begin treating those who have dedicated their lives to educating America's children with the respect they deserve. Compared to other professionals, educators are under-appreciated and under-paid. This must change if America is to have the finest education system in the world!

Quality education is impossible without quality teaching. If we continue to undervalue educators, it will become harder to attract, and keep, good people in the education profession. While educators' pay is primarily a local issue, Congress can, and should, help raise educators' take home pay by reducing educators' taxes.

This is why I am introducing the Teachers Tax Cut Act. This legislation provides every teacher in America with a $1,000 tax credit. I am also introducing the Professional Educators Tax Relief Act, which extends the $1,000 tax credit to counselors, librarians, and all school personnel involved in any aspect of the K-12 academic program.

The Teacher Tax Cut Act and the Professional Educators Tax Relief Act increase the salaries of teachers and other education professionals without raising federal expenditures. By raising the take-home pay of professional educators, these bills encourage highly qualified people to enter, and remain in, education. These bills also let America’s professional educators know that the American people and the Congress respect their work.

I hope all my colleagues join me in supporting our nation's teachers and other professional educators by cosponsoring the Teacher Tax Cut Act and the Professional Educators Tax Relief Act.