(STATEHOUSE) Feb. 12, 2009 - Reps. Jackie Walorski (R-Jimtown), Tim Neese (R-Elkhart), Wes Culver (R-Goshen) and David Yarde (R-Garrett) today stood up for Hoosier families in Northern Indiana who have been rocked by astonishingly high unemployment rates.
Two amendments, authored by Rep. Walorski, gained bipartisan support in the Indiana House of Representatives. Both were successfully amended into House Bill 1338 on second reading.
The first amendment would provide a one-time appropriation of $250,000 to economic development corporations in counties that have an unemployment rate higher than 14 percent. This passed with a vote of 89-0.
The second amendment aims to entice businesses to locate to Elkhart County by reducing the threshold required to receive tax credits for relocation. Previously, companies were required to have minimum annual worldwide revenue of $100 million. This amendment lowers that amount to $10 million for Elkhart County. This amendment was approved by voice vote.
Below are statements offered by Reps. Walorski, Neese, Culver and Yarde regarding the addition of these two amendments:
"Many companies have cold feet about locating to Elkhart County and nearby areas because of the recent attention on our high unemployment rate," Rep. Walorski said. "These amendments will go a long way to entice businesses to our area and create the jobs we need so badly."
"This is exactly the type of legislation that we need to stimulate job growth now," said Rep. Neese. "People in Elkhart County desperately need our support, and I expect that these amendments will begin to improve the economic conditions in area."
"We can't sit back and expect things to improve on their own," said Rep. Culver. "It's time for action. Families in our area are hurting, and we must do everything in our power to bring much needed assistance home to Elkhart County."
"We need to work harder and more aggressively to get jobs to out-of-work Hoosiers," Rep. Yarde said. "We need to use every tool in our arsenal to get this done - and now. The economic development initiatives introduced with these amendments will begin to get us back on the right track."
HB 1338 is now eligible for third reading in the House.
Contact Reps. Walorski, Neese, Culver or Yarde by calling the Statehouse toll-free at 1-800-382-9841 or writing them at the Statehouse, 200 W. Washington St., Indianapolis, IN 46204.