Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was expected to propose a policy Wednesday that would provide tax credits to businesses that take on apprentices. Political pundits predicted the announcement was an effort to drum up support for the Democratic presidential candidate among young voters, Reuters reported.
Clinton will detail her plan in a speech scheduled for 3 p.m. Wednesday at Trident Technical College in North Charleston, South Carolina. There, she's set to suggest the government give businesses a $1,500 tax credit for each apprentice they hire, rewarding them for the time and money they spend teaching new workers.
The ultimate goal would be to create jobs targeted toward skilled young people, as the youth unemployment rate remains at about 8 percent, CNN reported. Clinton's proposal also serves a political purpose: it caters to millennial voters, who are expected to make up a third of the electorate in 2016.
A campaign official told Bloomberg that Clinton thinks it's a "win-win" for business owners and workers as well as a way to increase wages. Nine years after apprenticing, Americans earn an average of $5,839 more than peers who didn't, according to a 2012 study from Mathematica Policy Research, which is based in Princeton, New Jersey.
Clinton's proposal mirrors one put forward last year by Sens. Cory Booker (D-N.J.), and Tim Scott (R-S.C.). It would have given businesses tax credits between $1,000 and $1,500 depending on apprentices' ages, paid for by reducing the federal government's printing waste, according to a news release.
The United States generally has fewer apprenticeships than countries abroad do, but the trend was bouncing back from a dip in 2011. Last year, there were more than 410,000 apprentices taking part in about 19,000 apprenticeship programs, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. Virginia, Ohio, New York and California were among the states with the largest numbers of apprentices, most of whom were training to be electricians, carpenters or plumbers.