WASHINGTON – Sen. Mazie K. Hirono (D-Hawaii) and Rep. Jill Tokuda (D-Hawaii) introduced the Natural Disaster Tax Relief Act of 2023 on Oct. 20.

Rep. Jill Tokuda (CBS)

The bill would lessen the tax burden on people impacted by major natural disasters in 2023. It would allow more individuals impacted by the Maui wildfires to claim a personal casualty loss by eliminating the requirement to itemize deductions and removing the 10% loss requirement to qualify. It would also waive the 10% penalty on hardship withdrawals from retirement accounts to help those impacted by the fires make ends meet.

“As communities on Maui continue to heal and recover from the devastating wildfires, this bill will help provide relief to those who have lost so much as a result of this disaster,” said Hirono. “By easing the financial burden on those impacted by the wildfires, as well as other disasters across our country, the Natural Disaster Tax Relief Act will help bring some peace of mind for families and individuals and help ensure they have the necessary resources to support themselves.”

The legislation is also co-sponsored by Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) and Rep. Ed Case (D-Hawaii).

Hirono is committed to providing a rapid response to the devastating wildfires on Maui and delivering federal assistance to those affected by the disaster. Earlier this month, she joined the Hawaii congressional delegation in introducing a bicameral resolution honoring the first responders and those who lost their lives and expressing support for the communities of West and Upcountry Maui.

Additionally, following advocacy by the Hawaii congressional delegation, the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA) announced that it is extending the application deadline for physical damage loans for those impacted by the Hawaii wildfires.

In September, Hirono voted to pass a continuing resolution (CR) to fund the federal government and deliver disaster relief for Maui. The CR, which funds the federal government through Nov. 17, included $16 billion in supplemental funding for the federal Disaster Relief Fund.

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