The Georgia House of Representatives today passed former State Rep. Tom Graves' (R-Ranger) tax cutting measure designed to spur job creation in Georgia, the first of its kind in the nation. The Jobs, Opportunity, and Business Success Act of 2010 (HB 1023) was approved with bi-partisan support and now heads to the Georgia Senate for consideration.
The vote was 154-8.
"In the middle of a national budget crisis, while many states are looking to raise taxes in order to cover their budgets, I am proud Georgia has taken a different approach and will now lead the nation in economic recovery," said Graves. "The JOBS Act is exactly the shot in the arm we need and will put Georgians back to work."
Graves first introduced the JOBS Act last year and the legislature overwhelmingly supported the bill. Unfortunately, it never became law.
"Instead of throwing in the towel, we rolled up our sleeves and went back to work." said Graves. "We gathered ideas from the Governor's office, House and Senate leadership and conservative members in the General Assembly and crafted a better bill that makes it easier to create a business in Georgia, provide access to much needed start-up capital, incentive employers to hire those seeking employment and reward hard work and success with lower taxes.
The JOBS Act of 2010 is a combination of tax credits, cuts and incentives to create, expand and attract new businesses in Georgia. The legislation the Georgia House approved today includes:
* "Angel Investor" Tax Credit: An income tax credit of up to 50 percent of an investment made in small or start up Georgia businesses with 20 or fewer employees. The income tax credits would be available after two years of investment. The total "Angel Investor" tax credit pool would be limited to $3 million per year (adjusted for inflation).
* Quarterly Credit Towards Unemployment Insurance Tax: For each eligible employee hired who is receiving State Unemployment benefits, a company will receive a quarterly credit towards their unemployment tax.
* Elimination of the Net Worth Tax: The net worth or intangible tax is a hold over from a 1930's law that taxes wealth accumulation. The Tax Foundation advocates the elimination of this tax as we are only one of a handful of states that still retain it.
* A Triggered 50 Percent Reduction of the Capital Gains Tax for all Georgia Taxpayers: Georgia currently has the 23rd highest Capital Gains tax in the country and the 2nd highest in the Southeast, with two of our neighboring states at zero percent.
Graves, who championed the bill in the House until earlier this week when he resigned his House seat in order to qualify for the upcoming special election in Georgia's 9th Congressional District, thanked Rep. John Lunsford for his leadership and spearheading its passage.
"We've been working on this since 2009, and I am thankful for the support and leadership of Rep. Lunsford and my colleagues in the legislature for now making Georgia the leader in economic recovery," said Graves. "Growing small businesses and attracting new businesses through free market principles is a cornerstone of our economy. A free market encourages private enterprise, ingenuity and pride in what you undertake."
Graves said he will now take this same conservative philosophy to Washington.
Graves represented the 12th House District from 2003 until this past Tuesday. Graves announced last May that he would seek the 9th District Congressional seat that was vacated by Congressman Nathan Deal, who is running for Governor.