Assemblymember Jim Patterson helping Valley business owners impacted by EDD backlog

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Fresno Assemblyman Jim Patterson is stepping up to help California business owners who have experienced hardship from a notorious backlog at the EDD.

"The problem is the EDD is not transparent, dragging information out of them is very difficult," he said. "What we do know is 400,000 applications are waiting to be processed."

The Workforce Opportunity Tax Credit gives employers a tax credit of up to $9,600 per person for hiring certain individuals who have faced significant barriers to employment.

But before an employer can collect on the incentive, they need the EDD to provide a certification confirming the employee qualifies for the credit but according to the EDD, they are an entire year behind on this process.

"This is a direct consequence of the EDD's fundamental failure to do something that they are supposed to do and they have an obligation to do it," Patterson said.

Amir Sadaghiani says he's done his part to take advantage of the federally funded tax credit but feels the EDD is not being held accountable.

Sadaghiani owns ActivMeals, a healthy meal prep company that serves the Central Valley. Due to the current backlog, he filed for a tax extension and will wait until EDD sends him the certification to file despite it already taking more than a year.

Patterson says it's frustrating for employers who follow the rules while the EDD is seemingly left to operate without consequences.

"It's usually an excuse by the EDD that we've heard over and over again, which is we don't have the people and the capacity to deal with 400,000 applications," he said. "To which I say, that's hogwash."

We reached out to the EDD for a comment but have not heard back from officials.
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