Many find lighter paychecks in wake of payroll tax hike - Houston weather, traffic, news | FOX 26 | MyFoxHouston

Many find lighter paychecks in wake of payroll tax hike

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HOUSTON (FOX 26) -

Brad Armelin sat alone in his office after having to calm the "troops" on payday.

"Soon as they got to work that morning, they were here early so I knew something was up and they were like, ‘Hey, we're short'," Armelin said.

The TitleMax general manager said his employees did not know that two percent payroll tax cut holiday they received in 2010 was going to end this year.

He said his staff failed to pay close attention to the deal-making in Washington DC, keeping the country from going over the fiscal cliff but leaving a little less in your check.

"Most of my employees are single moms, two or three kids and that $75 pays for day care because day care is like $75 a week, so it kind of hits home," he said.

Melissa Rascon, a certified public accountant, said the two percent loss was expected.  The Obama administration put it there, along with an extension of the Bush tax cuts for a very specific purpose.

"They pushed the extension by two years for a reason because the economy was in a deep recession, so it really wasn't time to make decisions such as increasing the tax rate on those who made $250,000 or more," Rascon said.

By now, you should have already received that first check for 2013.  If not, here is what to expect:

-- If you make $100,000 a year, you will see your check drop by $2,000 a year.
-- If you're pulling in $50,000 a year, then that will be $1,000 less for a 12-month period.

The bad news is that payroll tax break we enjoyed will not likely come back unless we dip into another deep recession the country has been living in the last few years, Rascon said.

In the meantime, back at Armelin's office, he is already feeling his employees' wrath.

"I think they just want to blame someone and get someone to try and get them their money back because they're in need," he said.

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