As we celebrate the enactment of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act this week amidst Republican false attacks and continued efforts to repeal, it is important to highlight the new benefits, choices and protections available through the law.
Today we’ll focus on the benefits for small businesses – the backbone of the economy and the engine for job growth in Maryland.
Small businesses – especially those with less than 10 employees- struggled and suffered under the old healthcare system to provide their workers with quality affordable health insurance. MIT economist Jonathan Gruber estimated that without reform, small businesses would pay nearly $2.4 trillion to cover health care costs collectively over the next 10 years, and 178,000 jobs would be lost as a result.
President Barack Obama and Democrats in Congress sought to immediately change the status quo and ensured that the Affordable Care Act would not only reduce the healthcare costs of small businesses but also expand access to insurance for their employees.
One provision of the law that has already gone into effect is tax credits that small businesses can use to pay for health insurance for their workers. The Small Business Majority found that more than 4 million small businesses are eligible to receive these credits including 122,100 here in Maryland. These much needed credits allow small business owners to keep (or even start) offering health care coverage and empower entrepreneurs to hire new workers.
Sadly, a national survey of small business owners found that 57% were not familiar with the available tax credits. That’s the reason why in Maryland, Democrats and health care reform proponents have launched an aggressive advertising campaign to encourage small businesses to take full advantage of the federal program.
Watch this video of Lt. Governor Anthony Brown – who is leading efforts to implement reform, tackle costs and improve quality – introduce the ‘Small Business Tax Credits – Your Healthy Bottom Line’ campaign:
Congressman votes to encourage availability of credit for “engines of the economy”.
(Washington, DC) – Congressman Elijah E. Cummings, (MD-07) was proud today to vote for H.R. 5486, the Small Business Jobs Tax Relief Act of 2010. This legislation will spur investment to small businesses, while offering tax incentives to help small businesses grow, hire, and fuel our economy. The bill is fully paid for and complies with pay-as-you-go budget law.
“There must be no more important concern for this Congress right now than putting Americans back to work,” said Cummings. “Small businesses are responsible for creating the majority of the jobs in our nation, and have been for years. The only way we can get our economy moving again is to make sure entrepreneurs on Main Street have the capital they need to expand and to put our fellow Americans back to work. I am proud to help move that process along, and I will continue to fight every day to create good American jobs.”
The bill increases the capital gains tax cut for those who invest in small businesses this year. The bill would exclude 100% of capital gain income for stock in small businesses purchased from March 15, 2010 to January 1, 2011. It also fixes a tax shelter disclosure penalty that disproportionately impacts small businesses. This measure was endorsed by the Small Business Council of America, and makes penalties for failing to disclose reportable transactions on their taxes proportionate to the tax savings for small businesses. Finally, there is an increase in tax deductions for a start-up business. The deduction for start-up costs will increase to $20,000 and allow more businesses to qualify for the maximum deduction. By allowing entrepreneurs to recover more start-up expenses, small business owners can focus more on hiring new workers and growing their businesses.
To pay for these credits, the bill closes tax loopholes permitting a tax credit for crude tall oil (a waste byproduct like black liquor) and allowing rich families to pass on wealth while cutting their estate and gift taxes.
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
June 15, 2010
Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Donna F. Edwards (D-MD) today voted for the Small Business Jobs Tax Relief Act of 2010, H.R. 5486, which passed the House 247-170. The legislation, which is fully paid for, expands much needed lending to small businesses and offers tax incentives to help small businesses grow.
“Small businesses are the economic engine for communities in the 4th Congressional District and across the country,” said Congresswoman Edwards. “While the nation’s economy shows signs of recovery, small businesses continue to face severe challenges due to a lack of credit and tight lending standards. I am proud to join my Congressional colleagues in passing this legislation, which is another step forward to providing the assistance small businesses need to expand, create jobs, and help the economy continue to grow.”
The Small Business Jobs Tax Relief Act of 2010 will:
- Potentially leverage up to $300 billion in loans for small businesses through a $30 billion lending fund for small and medium-sized community banks, which focus on lending to small firms, and $2 billion for innovative state lending programs supporting small business.
- Restart private investment to meet small businesses’ evolving financing needs through a new Small Business Administration public-private partnership.
- Provide $3.5 billion in bipartisan tax incentives to spur investment in small businesses and the formation of new small businesses, and grant small businesses tax penalty relief.
- Curtail tax loopholes permitting crude tall oil (a waste byproduct like black liquor) to get the biofuel tax credit.