NEW JERSEY – U.S. Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) Friday announced he is an original cosponsor of new legislation — the COVID-19 Youth Sports and Working Families Relief Act — to provide critical relief for North Jersey youth sports and activities groups that are faced with economic uncertainty from the COVID-19 pandemic, to equip working families with the financial tools to bounce back from this economic crisis, and to help save these organization that serve as cultural bedrocks of our communities.
Youth sports and activities groups have seen at least $8.5 billion in losses nationwide due to COVID-19, Gottheimer said.
“Kids love little league, dance, and soccer — but activities that families already paid for are cancelled due to the pandemic. With this new bill, we’re helping North Jersey families recoup costs and fees, while making sure these organizations survive this crisis for our kids to return to as we continue to reopen,” Gottheimer said.
The COVID-19 Youth Sports and Working Families Relief Act (H.R. 6912) would:
- Authorize a relief fund for youth sports providers, programs, and organizations currently affected by the COVID-19 pandemic;
- Expand the Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit, and ensure it includes expenses for youth physical activities, including organized individual and team sports, fitness and exercise, and other recreational activities;
- Ensure that expenses related to youth physical activities are eligible to be paid for with Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSAs); and
- Increase the maximum contribution per household for Dependent Care FSAs from $5,000 to $10,000.
The legislation is endorsed by the PLAY Sports Coalition, representing 3,000+ youth sports related organizations, Gottheimer said.
“For the first time in our lifetime, summer approaches without young people attending camps, playing baseball and participating in other activities,” said Wayne B. Moss, Executive Director of the National Council of Youth Sports (NCYS). “NCYS and the PLAY Sports Coalition are pleased to support the COVID-19 Youth Sports and Working Families Relief Act because it will provide relief to parents who desperately need help and will provide needed financial relief to support sports, recreation and fitness-related activities.”