Utility workers and employees of emergency response companies who come into the state and briefly work on disaster recovery projects will not have to pay Iowa income taxes in the future. The governor has approved the new policy. Senator Joe Bolkcom of Iowa City says those workers will continue to pay taxes in their home states.
“Emergency personnel move to do disasters state-to-state, so we simplify how people get taxed,” Bolkcom says.
As an example, Representative Josh Byrnes of Osage says it applies to utility workers who come to Iowa to help restore power after an ice storm.
“Basically what this does is it cuts out the red tape, doesn’t make them fill out all sorts of forms to pay Iowa income tax,” Byrnes says, “because normally they’re here for just a small window of time.”
Utility crews and other emergency response businesses helping New Jersey recover from Hurricane Sandy encountered all sorts of tax problems. Iowa’s new law is patterned after model legislation developed by the National Conference of State Legislatures and passed in many other states.
Last year, Iowa lawmakers voted to let Alliant Energy workers based in Wisconsin come into Iowa to work on emergency repairs without being required to pay income taxes to the State of Iowa.