Providence, RI – With Rhode Island workers and small businesses still struggling in this tough economy, U.S. Senator Sheldon Whitehouse today kicked off a month-long tour of small businesses in the state, and rolled out a series of initiatives to create jobs.
Whitehouse's jobs plan is a mix of policies and proposals that he has advocated for throughout his time in the Senate, and which, if passed, would provide a boost to small businesses throughout the state. Download Sheldon's Jobs Plan Here.
“My top priority is to get our economy back on track. That’s why I’m fighting hard to pass legislation that will put Rhode Islanders back to work, and touring the state to hear from small business owners about what they need to succeed and grow,” said Whitehouse. “The initiatives outlined in this jobs plan can help our economy by providing tax credits to businesses that hire, ending incentives to send jobs overseas, keeping tax rates low for small business owners and their workers, supporting highway construction jobs, and creating an even playing field with foreign competitors like China. I’ve heard from Rhode Island business owners and workers that these proposals are badly needed, and I’ll keep fighting to pass them into law.”
This morning, Whitehouse visited FarSounder, a Warwick company that develops sonar technology. The Senator heard from owners and employees about their business needs, and discussed his own ideas for creating jobs. This afternoon he will visit Imperial Packaging, a small carton manufacturing company based in Pawtucket. Both are successful companies with future plans for expansion in the state.
Whitehouse’s jobs plan would:
- Create jobs at home, not overseas. Our current tax code rewards companies for shipping jobs overseas. Whitehouse has introduced the Offshoring Prevention Act to end a policy that permits manufacturers who send jobs overseas to delay paying federal income taxes on foreign income. He has also cosponsored legislation that would prohibit companies from deducting the costs of moving jobs overseas and reward companies that bring jobs home.
- Give small businesses tax breaks for creating jobs. Senator Whitehouse strongly supports the Small Business Jobs and Tax Relief Act, which would provide a 10 percent income tax credit on new payroll—through either hiring or increased wages—added in 2012. This legislation, which is similar to the Job Creation Tax Credit Act Whitehouse introduced last year, would be worth up to $500,000 in tax credits per business.
- Keep tax rates low for small business owners and their workers. Senator Whitehouse supports extending the current tax rates for income under $250,000, preserving current tax rates for the vast majority of Rhode Islanders, as well as for 97% of American small business owners. At the same time, the Senator believes those at the very top should be paying a fair share and has introduced legislation known as the Buffett Rule, which would require multi-million-dollar earners to pay at least a 30% effective federal tax rate.
- Fix our roads and bridges, and support construction jobs. This year, Whitehouse fought to successfully pass a bill that will provide our state with roughly $500 million in federal funding for transportation projects, supporting the equivalent of nearly 9,000 jobs, according to estimates. He also worked with the Congressional Delegation to secure a $10 million federal grant that will help fund the replacement of the I-95 Viaduct in Providence – the stretch of highway immediately behind the Providence Place Mall. The Senator will continue supporting investments in our transportation infrastructure that create good construction jobs.
- Stop China’s unfair currency manipulation. The Chinese government’s currency manipulation puts Rhode Island manufacturers at a disadvantage by flooding our markets with inexpensive goods and making American products costly for Chinese consumers. Last year, Whitehouse helped pass a bipartisan bill in the Senate that would even the playing field by giving our government new tools to combat currency manipulation by other countries. The Republican House refused to hold a vote on the bill, but Senator Whitehouse is committed to working with our state’s House Members – Congressmen Cicilline and Langevin – to urge House Republican Leadership to pass this common-sense bill.