ARIZONA, USA — Arizona Senator Martha McSally introduced legislation on Monday that would encourage Americans to support the tourism industry following the COVID-19 pandemic.
The bill, called the "American Tax Rebate and Incentive Program Act" or American TRIP, would provide tax credits to Americans who spend money on lodging, entertainment, and other expenses related to travel in the United States and its territories.
The proposed legislation, if passed, would provide a $4,000 travel credit for individuals, or $8,000 for joint filers, through January 1, 2022. It would also include an additional $500 credit for dependent children.
However, the travel destination cannot be less than 50 miles from the taxpayer’s main residence.
“The tourism and hospitality industries were among the hardest hit sectors across the country and their revival is critical to our economic recovery,” McSally said. "My legislation will help boost domestic travel and jumpstart the comeback of our hotels, entertainment sectors, local tourism agencies, and the thousands of businesses that make Arizona one of the best places in the world to visit."
Destination Marketing Organizations would also receive $50 million to help promote travel and tourism across the nation.
This isn't the first time a travel incentive was pitched amid the coronavirus pandemic.
In May, President Donald Trump brought up the Explore America Tax Credit at a roundtable at the White House. This would reportedly give $4,000 travel tax credit for American households for the travel industry in another stimulus package.
"Create an 'Explore America' — that’s 'Explore,' right? 'Explore America' tax credit that Americans can use for domestic travel, including visits to restaurants. That’s a big deal," Trump said, according to a White House transcript.
However, White House economic adviser Kevin Hassett told the Wall Street Journal that there are "very, very high" odds of a Phase Four stimulus package before Congress goes on its August recess.