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Congressman Donnelly Hails Minimum Wage Increase and Small Business Tax Cuts

Press Release

Location: Washington, DC


Today, the first minimum wage increase in ten years was signed into law. Also, $4.84 billion in tax cuts for small businesses were included in the legislation.

"The time for a minimum wage increase is long overdue," Donnelly said. "A decent wage is essential for a working family to get by in America. This is not only good social and economic policy, it's just plain fair."

Increasing the minimum wage was a top priority of the new Democratic Congress and was one of the first pieces of legislation approved by the House in January.

In February, Donnelly co-sponsored and the House passed $1.3 billion in small business tax cuts as a piece of legislation separate from the minimum wage increase. However, when the Senate took up and passed the minimum wage increase, $12 billion in small business tax cuts was included in the same piece of legislation. The final figure of $4.84 billion in tax cuts for small businesses is the result of negotiations between the House and the Senate.

"Not only does this legislation give hard-working Hoosiers fair compensation, it facilitates small business growth," Donnelly said. "Tax cuts provided to small businesses --small businesses like the Wilson tomato farm in Galveston and the Weaver grain farm in Mishawaka--will allow them to invest in new technology, hire skilled workers and write off certain capital costs. And when these small businesses grow, we all benefit."

With Congressman Joe Donnelly's support, the minimum wage increase and small business tax cuts were approved by the House Thursday evening as part of the Iraq War funding bill. The bill promptly moved to the Senate, where it was approved less than two hours later. It was then sent to the president for his signature, which it received today.

The minimum wage will incrementally increase 60 days after enactment from $5.15 to $5.85. One year later, it increases to $6.55 and to $7.25 a year after that.

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