Last night, Reps. Michael G. Grimm (R-NY) and Loretta Sanchez (D-CA), introduced the Startup Act 2.0 (H.R. 5893) in the House of Representatives, with Reps. Robert Dold (R-IL), Jared Polis (D-CO), Kevin Yoder (R-KS), Russ Carnahan (D-MO), and Devin Nunes (R-CA). The Startup Act 2.0 is a bill to create and keep jobs in America; increase America's access to talent in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) by reforming high-skilled visa policies; and create opportunities for startup businesses with tax incentives and access to resources for innovation.
"I'm proud to lead Startup 2.0 in the House. U.S. immigration policy should help, not hurt, the ability of U.S. companies to attract top talent. As our economy continues to recover, we must further enable our entrepreneurs to grow and to create jobs. Startup 2.0 legislation is a natural follow-up to our efforts to jumpstart the economy and it is exactly the kind of legislation the United States needs to keep up with India, China and the rest of the global market," said Rep. Sanchez.
"Startup 2.0 is about creating American jobs. Too often we educate the world's best and brightest in STEM fields, only to send them back to countries like India and China to open businesses and compete against us. This bill will keep top talent here in the U.S. to build businesses that hire Americans, and drive U.S. innovation and competitiveness. I thank Senator Moran for his leadership on this legislation in the Senate and thank my colleagues in the House for working together across the aisle for the greater good of the American people and the U.S. economy," said Rep. Grimm.
"The one thing we can all agree on is the need to jumpstart our economy and create jobs here at home. Startup Act 2.0 is a bipartisan, commonsense bill that will help to spur the economy and empower job creators by recognizing the importance of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education, empowering small businesses, and rethinking burdensome regulations that prevent job growth," said Rep. Dold.
"Americans need more jobs now, which means we should be doing everything possible to encourage the launch of great new American companies. By helping startups grow and succeed, we unleash the creative energies of entrepreneurs and innovators to take their great ideas and turn them into new job creating businesses. This is exactly the kind of bipartisan, job-creating legislation that Congress should act on immediately," said Rep. Polis
"The Startup Act 2.0 is a great example of Congress working in a bipartisan manner to put Americans back to work. This legislation will help keep America a global leader in the science, technology, engineering and mathematics fields, and in the competition for the brightest minds of future generations. Additionally, it will give small businesses much-needed support to stay afloat and add employees. I'm glad to be a part of this team working to move the Startup Act 2.0 through the House," said Rep. Yoder.
"The Startup Act will encourage investors who want their money to grow American jobs and it will put funding for research and development right on the cutting edge of discovery, at our colleges and universities. It will give the men and women who are educated in America, who want to innovate and invent in America, a chance to do exactly that. We can create jobs in America that can never be sent overseas. We can build products that lead the world. We can do what we have always done in this nation; invent, innovate and deliver on our potential. The Startup Act will help make that happen," said Rep. Carnahan.
"America has always attracted the best and brightest entrepreneurs. If we are to continue building on this legacy, we must act now. The Startup Act represents a powerful bipartisan approach in this regard," said Rep. Nunes.
Startup 2.0 helps increase America's access to talent by creating a new set of conditional visas for 75,000 immigrant entrepreneurs and 50,000 foreign STEM graduate students, that are linked to the creation of American jobs. Research has demonstrated the positive impact of immigrants on American job creation: More than 40 percent of all Fortune 500 companies were founded by an immigrant or the child of an immigrant, and each foreign-born advanced degree holder who stays in the U.S. to work in a STEM occupation created an estimated 2.6 American jobs.
The bill also creates tax incentives for the creation of new businesses. Research shows that startups create 3 million jobs per year, on average. In addition, over the past 30 years, companies less than five years old have created almost all the new net jobs in America.
The bill has received industry support from Microsoft, Google, National Small Business Association (NSBA), CTIA, Consumer Electronics Association (CEA), Financial Services Forum, Computer and Communications Industry Association (CCIA), TechAmercia, Information Technology Industry (ITI), Compete America, Silicon Valley Leadership Group, and TechNet.
"Technology companies are driving vital job growth and opportunity that is crucial to America's economic recovery. To sustain this growth, companies like Microsoft need to be able to recruit and retain the world's brightest minds, enabling them to work with our large number of American employees. We applaud Representatives Grimm and Sanchez for introducing this critical legislation that will help fuel innovation and create more jobs in this country. We urge Congress to pass this bipartisan legislation quickly," said Brad Smith, General Counsel and Executive Vice President of Microsoft.
"Now is the time to give America's small businesses every tool possible to help them grow and create jobs. The Startup Act 2.0 does just that, including requiring cost-benefit analyses of federal regulations, bolstering research and innovation through tax credits and much more. I applaud Reps. Grimm and Sanchez for their leadership on this legislation," stated NSBA President and CEO Todd McCracken.
"This legislation consists of common sense approaches that will spur innovation, entrepreneurship and job creation. It is imperative that we allow foreign-born, U.S.-educated immigrants to remain in America and use their training to build businesses and create domestic jobs. Startup Act 2.0 makes it easier for innovators to raise funds, and clears away a variety of anachronistic regulations that have made it difficult for small businesses to expand and thrive. This bill is a slam-dunk. We applaud the introduction of this legislation and urge both the Senate and House of Representatives to pass these bills expeditiously," said Michael Petricone, Senior VP of Government Affairs, Consumer Electronics Association (CEA).
The Startup Act 2.0 was also introduced in the Senate on May 22, 2012 by Senators Jerry Moran (R-KS), Mark Warner (D-VA), Marco Rubio (R-FL), and Christopher Coons (D-DE).
"To get America's economic engine roaring once again, entrepreneurs must be free to pursue their ideas, start businesses in the United States, and create American jobs. These ideas have bipartisan support, and I am pleased my colleagues in the House are joining me in the effort to prove the critics wrong: Congress can get something done during an election year by coming together to strengthen the economy and create jobs," said Senator Moran.
"Startup 2.0 provides commonsense steps to support and encourage America's innovators and entrepreneurs. Working together, we have come up with bipartisan proposals to help us compete and win in the global contest for talent, and this legislation is the logical follow-up to passage of the bipartisan JOBS Act earlier this year," said Senator Warner.
"There are so many ideas for strengthening our economy that Democrats and Republicans agree on, but Congress seems to focus obsessively on the areas we don't. Startup Act 2.0, like the AGREE Act I was proud to introduce with Senator Rubio last fall, is about finding common ground and moving forward on it. I'm proud that this common ground now reaches into the House, thanks to Reps. Grimm and Sanchez, and look forward to working with them to help the bill pass in both chambers," said Senator Coons.