AT&T Is Handing Out $200 Million in Bonuses After the GOP Passed the Tax Bill

The company plans to give 200,000 workers each $1,000 as soon as Trump signs the legislation.

by Drew Schwartz
Dec 20 2017, 11:00pm

Photo by Tim Boyle/Newsmakers/Getty Images

The Republican's tax bill just passed in both the House and the Senate, which is great for rich people and big companies. AT&T, for one, is psyched—so much so, it promised to hand out $1,000 bonuses to 200,000 employees once Trump signs the bill into law, CNBC reports.

In a press release AT&T put out Wednesday, it also said it plans to add $1 billion to its budget for US capital expenditures—essentially, money it'll use to buy land, buildings, and other assets in America. Both the $1,000 bonuses and that budget increase are set to take effect when Trump signs off on the tax bill.

“Congress, working closely with the president, took a monumental step to bring taxes paid by US businesses in line with the rest of the industrialized world,” AT&T's chairman and CEO Randall Stephenson said in a statement. “This tax reform will drive economic growth and create good-paying jobs."

Among a host of other effects, the tax bill will cut the corporate tax rate from 35 percent to 21 percent. AT&T has been pushing to get that rate lowered for a while now; back in November, it promised to add $1 billion to its capital expenditure budget if Congress passed the House's original tax bill, which would've knocked the corporate tax rate down to 20 percent.

Critics online—including Seattle Times reporter Mike Rosenberg—immediately pointed out that AT&T had already promised to hand out $1,000 bonuses to 20,000 workers as part of union negotiations. AT&T is also lobbying the Trump administration to approve a merger deal with Time Warner, and the company therefore has obvious reasons to attempt to get on the president's good side by publicly praising him and giving him a talking point.

According to Business Insider, AT&T isn't the only company celebrating the passage of the GOP's tax bill with some major investments. Just after the legislation made it through the House, Boeing announced it would drop $300 million on charitable and "employee-related" investments. Fifth Third Bancorp promised to raise its minimum wage to $15, along with kicking thousands of employees $1,000 bonuses.

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