Montanans speak out in favor of Jobs Bill
(Washington D.C.) – Montanans today expressed their support for the Jobs Bill currently before Congress, saying the bill will help create good paying jobs and get Montana’s and the country’s economy back on track.
Montana’s U.S. Senators Max Baucus and Jon Tester played a key role in writing the Jobs Bill- Baucus as chairman of the Senate Finance Committee and Tester as member of the Senate Appropriations Committee. Community members are speaking out in support of the Jobs Bill, citing specific measures in the bill that will ensure Montana’s businesses, industries and communities continue to thrive.
Webb Scott Brown; CAE, President/CEO Montana Chamber of Commerce:
“As Montana’s leading business advocate, the Montana Chamber believes that immediate action is needed to spur our economy and get America moving in the right direction economically. The economic stimulus actions that are being contemplated must be timely and temporary. We can invest in infrastructure, restore confidence in our financial markets to allow business to make the investments we need, provide significant tax relief for employers and jumpstart the housing industry.”
Provisions to Help Montana Industries
The Jobs Bill contains tax help to ensure Montana companies can keep their doors open and their employees on the job. One provision, the net operation loss carry back, allows timber, homebuilding and technology companies to recoup a percentage of taxes they paid during more stable economic times.
Pat Connell; Certified Forester and Vice President of Resource Operations Rocky Mountain Log Homes in Hamilton:
“Senator Baucus' and Senator Tester's efforts to extend the net operation loss carry back have huge implications for small, independent timber products companies in Montana. This single outcome would be vital to our survival in spite of the current banking and credit crisis, allowing us to help regain our pre-recession level of production and the re-employment of hard working Montanans.”
Robert F. Bargatze, Ph.D.; Chief Scientific Officer at LigoCyte in Bozeman:
“This approach to economic stimulus will have a very positive far reaching impact on Montana’s overall small business technology industry. I want to thank Montana’s senators for their support of this Economic Recovery Package.”
Provisions For Active Military/Veterans
The Jobs Bill contains several provisions to help Montana’s active military and veterans find good paying jobs at home and weather the economic down turn. The measures include a one-time payment to put more cash in the pockets of veterans receiving benefits from the Department of Veterans Affairs, and tax incentives to encourage businesses to employ service members returning from war.
Brigadier General John Walsh; Montana National Guard:
"On behalf of the Soldiers and Airmen of the Montana National Guard, we appreciate the continued support our congressional delegation provides our state National Guard."
Eivind Forseth; Airborne Ranger and Disabled Iraq veteran from Billings:
“The $300 relief payment in the stimulus will undoubtedly help our nation's veterans. More often than not, veterans who have recently separated from active duty struggle to make ends meet. Those who are eligible for compensation normally wait up to twelve months or more to receive their veterans' benefits. Our veterans deserve every cent.”
Paul Rieckhoff; Executive Director of Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA):
"The current economic downturn is hitting new veterans especially hard. Imagine returning from combat in Iraq and Afghanistan only to struggle to support yourself and your family. That's not the homecoming our brave veterans have earned. The expansion of the Work Opportunity Tax Credit will encourage employers to do their patriotic duty, and help our newest veterans succeed in their civilian life. IAVA thanks Senator Baucus and Senator Tester for their commitment to supporting our Troops.”
Provision to Boost Telecommunication
In addition, the Jobs Bill includes funding that could be used to create good paying jobs and keep Montanans connected by upgrading and expanding telephone, internet and telecommunication technologies.
Geoff Feiss; Montana Telecommunications Association:
“The Montana Telecommunications Association (MTA) is pleased that Congress and the Obama Administration have recognized the importance of broadband telecommunications infrastructure in promoting economic growth in America. MTA members are committed to deploying advanced telecommunications technologies throughout their service areas, and are looking forward to working with Senator Baucus, Senator Tester and Congress to target broadband investment support effectively and efficiently to currently underserved or unserved rural areas.”
Provisions to Protect Montana’s Outdoor Heritage
There are dollars in the Jobs Bill to fund projects to create jobs in the woods, invest in alternative energy and restore and protect Montana’s outdoor heritage.
Richard Opper, Director of the Montana Department of Environmental Quality:
“These funds will allow us to clean up environmental contamination in a timely, coordinated and cost-effective manner. There is no better way to improve the environment, public health, and the economy than by putting Montanans to work now on good projects with this much-needed stimulus package.”
Provisions for Struggling Families
To help families struggling to put food on the table, he bill contains funding for the Emergency Food Assistance Program as well as funding for other nutrition programs.
Kathryn Bradford; Director of Public Policy for the Montana Food Bank Network:
“We see funding for food programs as a very critical component of an economic recovery package. People with low incomes are impacted much more severely during tough economic times, and many are seeking assistance from public food programs and emergency food banks for the first time.”