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U.S. Chamber Outlines Support for Legislation that Creates Jobs, Helps Small Businesses

Wednesday, February 11, 2009 - 7:00pm

Josten: "Economy is in Uncharted and Dangerous Waters and Inaction is Not an Option"

WASHINGTON, DC—The U.S. Chamber of Commerce's Executive Vice President of Government Affairs Bruce Josten issued the following statement after House and Senate conferees announced an agreement on a stimulus package aimed at stimulating consumption and investment, creating jobs, and jumpstarting the economy:

"Since the elections, we've vowed to work with the President to quickly develop and pass a stimulus bill that would apply a defibrillator to our economy and shock it back to life.

"While we're concerned with individual items in this package, the whole is more important than the individual parts. The global economy is in uncharted and dangerous waters and inaction from Washington is not an option. No package of this size can be perfect but we need a bill that will unlock capital markets, free up credit, and create momentum in the economy.

"The Chamber is disappointed that the net operating loss (NOL) provision is not expansive enough to apply to all businesses, but we're pleased that the current bill will provide some help to smaller Main Street businesses. We support the cancellation of indebtedness tax provisions that will encourage businesses to restructure and reduce debt, enabling them to preserve jobs, renew investment, and begin to grow once again.

"Spending on 'shovel-ready' construction projects, expanding broadband access, and modernizing our health care information are major steps toward boosting our nation's infrastructure and creating American jobs.

"And by offering tax incentives to first-time home buyers and new car purchasers, this bill could provide much needed liquidity to the market while jumpstarting critical industries.

"We urge both chambers of Congress to swiftly pass the bill, but with the economy in freefall and the credit markets in gridlock, this is just the beginning. Now comes the hard part of addressing the underlying causes of the crisis and refocusing on the long-term goal of fiscal discipline."

The U.S. Chamber is the world's largest business federation representing more than 3 million businesses and organizations of every size, sector, and region.

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