U.S. Senator Chris Coons hosted a 90-minute roundtable discussion with a dozen small business leaders in Newark on Thursday morning to consider ideas for helping Delaware's high-tech, research-driven companies grow and create jobs in Delaware.
"We have a responsibility to help innovators and entrepreneurs transform their ideas into new products, and to help those products find markets in the U.S. and abroad," Senator Coons said. "That's how we're going to create the next generation of manufacturing jobs here in Delaware and across the country. I'm committed to doing whatever I can to nurture the growth of Delaware's innovative small businesses."
Among the topics discussed were targeted tax credits, improved access to capital, "wet" lab space for biotechnology research, patent reform, trade enforcement, and stronger investments in math and science education.
"Delaware is one of the world's best places to locate a technology-driven or alternative-energy business," Senator Coons said. "Just last month an independent report found Delawareans to be among the smartest, most innovative, most productive workers in the world. We need to support the businesses that are going to put those folks to work."
In April, Senator Coons introduced his first bill, the Job Creation Through Innovation Act, to jumpstart domestic manufacturing and help innovative small business grow by:
* Expanding, simplifying and making permanent the Research & Development Tax Credit
* Creating a new Small Business Innovation Tax Credit
* Creating a new Domestic Manufacturing Tax Credit
* Extending the 1603 Treasury Grants Program
* Investing in the Advanced Energy Manufacturing Tax Credit
Thursday's roundtable was the second of three Senator Coons will host this month to engage Delawareans in a candid conversation about strategies for helping businesses create much-needed jobs. The first was held on Monday and focused on jobs for America's veterans.
Participants in Thursday's roundtable, which was held at the Delaware Technology Park in Newark, included:
* Chet Benham, Vice President & General Manager, Air Liquide
* Mike Bowman, representing FSI and the Delaware Technology Park
* Patti Cannon, Delaware Economic Development Office
* Andrew Cottone, Vice President for Chemistry and Co-founder, Adesis
* Franr M. DiNuzzo, President and CEO, SDIX
* Doug Hicks, Vice President of Business Development, iBio
* Ben Hsu, Chief Financial Officer, QPS
* Kelvin Lee, Director, Delaware Biotechnology Institute
* Brian Pryor, President, LiteCure
* Ron Simonetti, Founder and Owner, Waste Carpet Depot and Modular Carpet Recycling
* Patrick Walker III Ph.D., Attorney, McCarter and English
* Richard Wool, CEO of Crey Bioresins and Professor of Chemical Engineering Center for Composite Materials ACRES Program at UD
Next month, Senator Tom Carper and Representative John Carney will join Senator Coons in organizing a third job fair for Delawareans. That job fair will be on September 26th in Georgetown.