Illustrating the positive impact of tax reform on employees, several representatives from Universal Plumbing & Heating Co. of Las Vegas participated April 12 in a White House event during which President Donald Trump spoke about how tax reform is benefiting American workers.
“From small family businesses on up, American employers have been able to raise wages and increase benefits for their workers as a result of the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act,” Trump said. “More than 5.5 million hardworking taxpayers have received bonuses, pay raises and increased benefits as a result of these really massive tax cuts. Millions more are getting higher take-home pay.”
The invitation to Universal came after the company, a member of the Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors—National Association (PHCC), took to Twitter last month to announce that, with “the @realDonaldTrump tax plan and the success and hard work” of its employees, the company was able to give bonuses to every one of its staff members.
As Universal President Rich Kerzetski spoke at the Rose Garden event
“After purchasing much-needed trucks, tools and office equipment, which were long overdue, we were excited to share the tax cut benefits with our 35 employees," Kerzetski said. "In addition to seeing increases in their weekly paychecks, we gave bonuses of $500 and $1,000 to all employees. We also increased our workforce by hiring several new employees.”
Kertzetski is chair of the PHCC Educational Foundation’s Apprentice Journeyman and Training Committee and is a former member of the PHCC Educational Foundation Board of Directors.
For the representatives of Universal, the White House event was a chance to communicate how the tax reform bill has positively impacted their employees’ lives, including plumbing apprentices John Achzet and James Jamison. Achzet, a second-year apprentice at the company, shared how his bonus helped to pay down medical bills after his newborn had to stay in intensive care for a week.
“The doctor bills were coming in from the hospital and we worried about paying them, and Universal Plumbing gave us a $1,000 bonus because of President Trump’s Tax Reform,” Achzet said.
The extra money also came in handy for apprentice Jamison, whose car was totaled in a recent accident (and who, coincidentally, also had a newborn child in intensive care).
“These are people who were really affected by President Trump’s tax cuts,” Universal Operations Manager Vic Poma said prior to the event. Poma added that, as one of the oldest trade associations in the country, PHCC is really gaining traction among multiple government agencies in Washington.
“They give us a platform because of how powerful PHCC is. Likewise, I want PHCC members to know how strong our reputation is with the government.”
In fact, just this past year, PHCC has participated in very productive meetings at the White House and on Capitol Hill to discuss infrastructure needs, deregulation, and the crucial workforce shortage.
“We are so pleased that, as a result of our work in Washington, D.C. — specifically with the White House — the interests of PHCC members and the industry have been elevated in terms of our visibility with the Administration and national policy makers," said PHCC — National President Laurie Crigler of L&D Associates in Aroda, Virginia.
PHCC members’ next opportunity to bring a unified message to Capitol Hill on issues impacting their businesses, employees, families and communities is the May 22-23 PHCC Legislative Conference.