And the rewards for a solid tax reform plan keep coming.
You can add big-box retailer, Walmart, to the growing list of companies passing the benefits of the recently signed GOP tax bill down to their employees.
The announcement this morning is that the company will be increasing its starting wage for U.S. workers from $9 an hour to $11 an hour.
To this point, that $9 wage was until they completed a training program. After that, they get $10 an hour.
The company also intends to expand maternity and paternal leave benefits.
Walmart will also be paying a one-time cash bonus to eligible employees of as much as $1,000. The payouts, which should total roughly $400 million, will result in a one-time charge that the company will take in the fourth quarter of this year.
The bonuses will be determined by an employee’s length of service at the company. Those workers with more than 20 years of experience will qualify to receive the full $1,000. However, workers with two to four years of experience will receive $250, a Walmart spokesman told CNBC.
I know a lot of people that would consider even an extra $250 to be a blessing.
Employees with 15 to 19 years of service at Walmart will receive $750, while those with 10 to 14 years of work there will receive a $400 bonus, and five to nine years of experience merits a $300 bonus, he said.
And this is the part that is absolutely amazing to me:
If you are a Walmart employee and you’ve been seeking to adopt a child, the company is starting a new benefit that will pay $5,000 per child, to help with adoption agency fees, the translation and legal costs.
That’s not just a fiscal boon, but a pro-life win, actually. Provide relief for those willing to adopt, it supports the argument for promoting adoption over abortion.
“Tax reform gives us the opportunity to be more competitive globally and to accelerate plans for the U.S.,” CEO Doug McMillon said in a statement.
“We are early in the stages of assessing the opportunities tax reform creates for us to invest in our customers and associates and to further strengthen our business, all of which should benefit our shareholders,” he added. “However, some guiding themes are clear and consistent with how we’ve been investing — lower prices for customers, better wages and training for associates and investments in the future of our company, including in technology.”
More than 1 million employees will be reaping the rewards of a reformed tax code, and this begins in February.
And while there are those who argue that Walmart kills small businesses, for those it employs, it’s a blessing.
I was in Walmart recently and overheard a conversation one of the cashiers was having with another employee.
“People are always down on Walmart. I don’t care. Walmart is a good place to work.”
I don’t know if she’d just got the news of her coming bonus and increased benefits, but if she felt that way before, I’m sure she’s loving her job, now.