SACRAMENTO, CA – A bill that is pending in the California Assembly would give businesses a tax credit to improve the fitness of their employees. The credit would be equal to 10 percent of what businesses spend each year on fitness improvement.

The measure, according to the San Francisco Chronicle, also would allow employers to claim the same credit for half the cost of hiring a person or company to provide nutritional advice, yoga instruction or substance-abuse prevention.

Bill AB1439, introduced by Assemblyman Lloyd Levine, D-Van Nuys, on Feb. 23, says that fitness expenditures include an employee gym, swimming pool, weight room, running track and indoor and outdoor courts or sports fields.

Others costs that would count toward the credit include equipping an amateur athletic team, contracting with another organization to operate an employee fitness facility and subsidizing health club memberships for workers.

Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger stated a goal in January of extending health insurance coverage to California’s 6.5 million uninsured residents and bringing down treatment costs through disease prevention. The tax credit bill must pass through both the Assembly and the Senate before reaching Schwarzenegger, who has not taken a position on the bill but is supportive of its goal, according to the Chronicle.