[r63] Small businesses, the driving force of the economy

Posted by: Zach Weismiller  | Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Throughout my tenure in the legislature, and most of my discussions with Hoosiers, the number one concern that is brought up is jobs. America is the land of opportunity, and we cannot let the ideals that built this country be tarnished. Indiana is only as strong as its people and providing an environment for Hoosiers to flourish is essential for continued prosperity. It’s all about owning your American Dream, and I want to serve you by helping to make those dreams a reality.

Our job as legislators is to help create conditions where people aren’t afraid to take risks, be innovators and workers who will create jobs and opportunities for Indiana’s current and future generations. As a business owner, I understand the importance of working within a budget and balancing responsibility and fiscal integrity. That being said, I would like to let you know about some bills that are aimed to strengthen Indiana’s economy.

I am co-authoring House Bill (HB) 1414, the Indiana New Markets Jobs Act, which establishes a tax credit to attract private investments in economically distressed neighborhoods. This program stems from Congress in the Community Renewal Tax Relief Act of 2000. The program is designed to create jobs and lead to material improvement in the lives of residents of low-income communities. Examples of expected projects include financing small businesses, improving community facilities such as daycare centers and increasing home ownership opportunities.

HB 1414 passed out of the Committee on Commerce, Small Business and Economic Development, which I chair, this week by a 13 to nothing vote and will next be heard on the Committee on Ways and Means. I am confident that this legislation will help struggling communities and businesses grow throughout Indiana.

Another bill I’m authoring is House Bill 1019 which would permit the Indiana Economic Development Corporation to more effectively use the Hoosier Business Investment Income Tax Credit. Currently, the HBI is nonrefundable, and new startup companies have a difficulty using it as a benefit during early years of operation. House Bill 1019 would allow the IEDC the latitude to structure the HBI income tax credit as a refundable credit and make it more effective as a tool in attracting companies and jobs to Indiana. These bills directly focus on creating jobs, spurring economic development and driving growth. If you would like to follow these bills’ progress online, please visit www.in.gov/legislative, and refer to the bill number. Stay warm out there, and keep me up to date with your thoughts on this legislative session by emailing me at h63@in.gov.